Friday, June 27, 2008
When we first decided to move, I had many criteria in mind for the ideal home and property. Coming from the south, where there were many choices in housing to be had, and many developments which were ongoing, I was surprised to find it was not the same here in the Cariboo.
It was the first surprise...there would be many others.
With two dogs in tow, it was not easy to find a rental property, while we searched for our ideal home. Staying in a motel seemed to be the only answer.
All homes I looked at were under a blanket of Snow. There was no telling what might lie under the Snow. I heard stories of people buying homes in Winter, only to find when break-up came along that there were garbage and old cars littering the property everywhere. The search for the home I had in mind became elusive...and I knew it would be up to us to make our new home ideal for us.
Although the home we finally bought was extremely clean and well-kept, when Snow melt came along I was disappointed to find no actual garden planted. But the former owners had left no footprint at all...it felt as if they had never actually lived here.
The Cariboo, along with many other parts of the country, seemed to ignore Spring this year, leaping straight into Summer. Even when Snow had melted, it seemed I was the owner of a wild piece of property. And because it was so cold for such a long time, nothing poked its head out of the ground to greet a new season, preferring to remain huddled under the Earth.
But slightly warmer weather came along, and sprouts of...things...came up out of the ground, sending strap like leaves I had never seen before to cover whole sections of the property. With the exception of Wood Violets and Strawberries, nothing else seemed to bloom, however...for what seemed like an eon.
Thinking I was surrounded by only green...coniferous and deciduous Trees and Shrubs were abundant...I planted pots full of Herbs and Flowers and Tomatoes. I visited nurseries which suddenly sprang up everywhere, being closed and hidden during the Winter. I bought Lilacs and Hydrangeas and Black Elder. I bought perennials such as Ligularia and Hostas and Vines.
Sun's rays are stronger here in the Northern Interior. Daylight lasts longer than on the Coast as well, with Sun rising earlier and setting later. Those two elements makes gardens bounce; I am constantly amazed at the beautiful gardens I see as I drive to town...old, well-kept spaces, with shrubbery that astounds me.
More than a tended garden, however, I wanted a Fence. Beyond keeping the two dogs in my yard, I wanted that Fence to delineate the areas where I could garden, without losing my cultured plants to the Forest.
The Fence has done its job; more than that, it has grounded the House, making it look firmly planted.
But as quickly as the Fence went up, the Forest and its Meadows bloomed. Glory Be.
I am now in a conundrum.
There are Flowers everywhere. I'm not sure of the names of some; they have differences from descriptions in books.
Do you remember the wild Roses that bloomed, seemingly everywhere, in your youth? I do. They are no longer as prolific in the area where I grew up...Man and his ways the culprit. But it seemed the countryside was enveloped in a soft, pink perfume...when I think of Pink, I think of these perfectly beautiful, perfectly useful and perfectly loving plants.
And lately, with the Wild Rose blooming profusion around me, I have felt particularly loving. I am sure the aroma that assaults my nose and the colour my eyes are drawn to have much to do with it. This, along with the way the Wild Rose takes me back to my youth, when I was in awe of plants which came out of the ground, seemingly out of nowhere, every season.
There are Lilies, Columbines, Daisies, Sedums, Babies Breath (who blooms right beside Rose!), Blue-eyed Grass, Asters and Yarrows, Arnica, Vetches and Pea Vines, Indian Paint Brush and many, many more, all showing their colours, popping up right under my feet.
They are exuberant and wild and free. Their nodding heads take what the Mountain Gods throw at them with impunity. Planted by Spirit and cohorts, in a wild spree, the Flowers are strong, at one with the area in which they find their roots. And they are glorious.
At the moment, I am not so sure I want a Bobcat to come in to tame the glorious spectacle...
How can I, when I loved these Flowers so, as a child, be the one that destroys the exuberance? How can I align myself, with the ones who killed the Wild Roses that lined the roads...?
And so, I won't.
What I will do, is plant my shrubs amongst them. I will tame some, a little. A bit of pruning goes a long way to make a garden look tended, even one planted by the Spring Gods and Goddesses, in a wild revelry.
Doing so will keep my shrubs protected from the whims of changeable Weather, and also protect them for a few years from Sun's hot Interior rays, until they have found purchase in the soil.
When I first came here, I accepted a challenge, in many different ways.
Gardening in the bush is just one more of them.