Gardening as Therapy

'Queen of the night' Tulip

‘Queen of the night’ Tulip

Sometimes, things happen. Things that we don’t expect to happen, happen, and life changes… forever. We’re living through that at the moment, and it is really hard to navigate through all of the emotions we are feeling. Gardening is such an important part of my life, and it is in the garden where I feel healing. Please join me for a few minutes to enjoy some peace and tranquility in my garden.

‘Queen of the Night’ Tulips

The Queen of the Night tulips are strikingly beautiful, and for me their darkness also represents the sorrow that we feel. A friend and colleague of ours, and a genuinely super nice guy, Shay, achieved his life long ambition to reach the summit of Mt. Everest last week. Tragically, he fell on his descent. There are no other details, other than he is missing. It just doesn’t seem possible. Not Shay. But this is our new reality, including feeling numb with sadness. Gardening seems so trivial at times like these, but the garden is where I can go to find peace, and beauty, and renew my faith that somehow we, the immense community with whom Shay has so positively impacted, will all somehow get through this sad time. Come walk with me, as we use gardening as therapy…

Viburnum surrounded by Mystic van Eijk (the large tulips) and Don Quichotte (the small purple tulips)

Viburnum surrounded by Mystic van Eijk (the large tulips) and Don Quichotte (the small purple tulips)

The first of my tulips bloomed in March. They are circled around the Viburnum which blooms in May. The Beech hedges along the fence are still wearing their winter browns in this picture.

Viburnum opulus 'Roseum'

Viburnum opulus ‘Roseum’ May 21, 2019 with the remnants of the tulips still showing. The Beech hedge is now wearing sporting green leaves.

parrot tulips

Parrot tulips also bloom early in the season

Princess tulips April 27

Princess tulips April 27

The Princess tulips are just a couple of years old. Tulips can tend to “fade” with time (not look as nice after a few years). These are still young enough to look fresh.

Princess tulips + Queen of the Night tulips

Queen of the Night tulips + Princess Tulips

Queen of the Night tulips + Princess Tulips

I thought the contrast of the dark Queen of the Night and the bright Princess tulips would be nice together.  My only complaint is that the Princess tulips wither much quicker than the Queen of the Night tulips. But they are pretty.

Blushing Lady tulips

Blushing Lady tulips

The Blushing Lady tulips are special to me, because they were one of the first flowers that I planted in our home in Manlius, New York. A number of years ago I planted some in our current garden right next to the playhouse, but they were dug up (unintentionally!) and destroyed in the process.  So these were planted autumn 2018, well away from the playhouse. They are tall and the flowers are huge.

Blushing lady tulip

Blushing Lady Tulip

Merlot tulips + cherry tree

Merlot tulips + cherry tree

The Merlot tulips are also a new addition, planted in autumn 2018.  It is quite a strong color, which I like.

Merlot tulips + aubrietia

Merlot tulips + Aubrietia

The Merlot tulips look amazing with the Aubrietia (this is a second grouping of the Merlot tulips in the same bed).

Merlot tulips

Merlot tulips

Here’s a look at the full bed.  There are 3 groups of Merlot tulips, and 2 spare Ballerina tulips (they are orange) that were supposed to be moved out of this bed last year. The Aubrietia did really well this year. It is ever so slowly making its way to crawl over the wall (hopefully). The Boxwood (Box) has a lot of new growth, giving it a yellowish hue. I have a few Rose plants in here, too.

Merlot tulips open May 14

Merlot tulips open May 14

I do like capturing the inside of tulips.

Double Angelique tulips

Double Angelique tulips

Ballerina tulip fully open

Ballerina tulip fully open in May

Ballerina tulips are a fiery orange.  I have (most of them) at the ditch wall in our garden and they can still be seen from across the yard.

Tulip Ballerina

Ballerina tulips

Ballerina tulips open in May

And that brings us to the end of our garden tour, using gardening as therapy. Thank you for walking with me on this journey of grief. I pray for Shay, and his family, and that all of us will find peace.

In peace,

2 thoughts on “Gardening as Therapy

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