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Entries in gardening (1)


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One of the things I try to do is to surround myself with warmth and beauty.  I love our home.  I have carefully chosen colors and furnishings that soothe my soul.  I want my home to be a haven.  This morning I was looking for a recipe and grabbed one of Ina Garten's books.  I never just head to the index.  I peruse.  Here is what she wrote about her home...

"A good home should gather you up in its arms like a warm cashmere blanket, soothe your hurt feelings, and prepare you to go back out into that big bad world tomorrow all ready to fight the dragons. I want my house to feel serene and beautiful, like the way you feel when you get into a bed piled high with down pillows: you're safe"

Ina Garten and I are sisters under the skin, perhaps cooking and decorating twins separated at birth.  I love her calm manner and the soft, slow cadence of her speech.  If you have never seen her, there are videos on Youtube.  One of the things I do to soothe myself is to give myself a fresh cut flower allowance monthly.  I allow myself 40$ per month.  I'm not the type of person that seeks change.  I like what I like for the reasons I like it and I stick with it.  I also don't like mixing things together.  I don't ever buy bunches of mixed flowers.  I find it all distracting and overwhelming to my sense of sight and smell.  This relates to my fresh flower allowance in that in the winter I buy gladiolas, usually white or if I can find them, a deep crimson (never mixed together) and in the summer, Alstroemelia, again either white or a deep crimson.  A few weeks ago I was forced to go with yellow and it sort of jarred my little personal planet in its orbit.  I survived.  Both the glads and the Alstroemelia last for almost 2 weeks.  Each costs ten dollars for three bunches.  I put them in my favorite vase, a huge heavy rolled rim glass vase from Pottery Barn.  The vase is 18 inches high and with the flowers in now it is 33 inches high, a real eye catcher.

This morning I took my little camera and wandered the yard.  I wanted to share with you the things outside my home that bring me joy and serenity.  I've carefully chosen and tended each of them.  My proudest achievement is growing Hydrangeas here in tropical southeastern Florida.  They are not supposed to survive  here.  I have worked very hard to figure out what they need to survive here and think I've got it.  They live under a stand of small palm trees protected from direct sun, receiving only shafts of filtered sunlight.  They remind me of my Grandmother.  Right now the humidity and heat loving tropical plants are just glorious...take a look.  We live in  a golf community of smallish yards.  I think if one loves plants, a garden can be made lovely anywhere.