Back in July, I had the great pleasure of going on a tour of the beautiful Ruppert Nurseries in Laytonsville, MD. The highlight of the tour was a tree spade demonstration with their shiny, new, extra-large tree spade. Before that day, I’d seen tree spades, and I’d seen large balled & burlapped trees, but I’d never seen how the one made the other happen. Neat stuff. Follow this link to an album of photos and short video clips to see for yourself!
As a purist, I often shake my head at the high cost of plant material– I mean, plants grow in the wild for free, right? Of course the answer is much more complicated and I really do appreciate the craft and beauty of great specimens grown in nurseries, but this article from Houzz is right up my alley.
Did you see the Opening Ceremony of the London Olympics? I really enjoyed the conceptual framework and quirky design aesthetic that Boyle brought to the spectacle. For example, I loved the Marry Poppins umbrellas with the lightbulbs at the tips. And how about the illuminated doves on bikes? I would REALLY love a pair of illuminated dove wings to wear when I ride my bike. BUT my FAVORITE part was the tree at the top of the tor. Here he has millions of pounds to spend and a brilliant imagination and what symbolic element does he choose to anchor the set, draw the eyes of billions, and hold the flags of nations? That’s right, a mound with a tree on top of it! There is a lot of ancient symbolism bound up in the tor/mound/ziggurat and the tree/axis mundi/source of knowledge and I will refrain from lecturing about it here but suffice it to say, I was pleased to see something so humble yet powerful presented as the focus of a multi-million dollar international spectacle.
In May, I enthusiastically planted a number of annual flowers from seed thinking that this beginner’s, from scratch, approach would be the way to go to maximize satisfaction with minimal capital investment. There have been some ups and downs. Well, mostly, the squirrels and chipmunks have enjoyed the all-you-can-eat buffet, but I did finally manage to put together a bright and sunny bouquet this morning. It includes two sunflowers and a few cosmos, including the interesting, older, star-like, dried blooms. I couldn’t bring myself to cut the lone surviving zinnia from the bed and the other survivor, a Mexican sunflower, I will write more about in an upcoming post. In the meantime, enjoy!