It was she, who during long walks amongst the majestic deciduous forests of Lambton County, who first introduced me to the enchanted world of Shade. I learned that moss grows better on one side of a felled log than the other, that the Trillium was so named because it’s petals and foliage are trifoliate, that Mayapples are quite different than the tart Granny Smiths that remain a personal favourite, and perhaps most memorable of all, I learned that, look as long and hard as I wanted to, Jack, or Satan for that matter, did not reside within the serpent like spathe of our native Arisaema triphyllum!
Of course she was so much more than that to me, she was my Grandmother, my mentor, my confidante, my friend! Of all the photos that I have collected of my garden over the years, this one in particular resonates with remembrance for her. I remember laying along the narrow pathway of the Shaded Walk in order to capture this shot – the varying textures and hues of the garden during the ‘gloaming’ hour. Forty years ago, if one were to spy on me, they would have found me striking an eerily similar pose as I lay peering into the north facing shade border of my Grandmother’s property, eager to catch a glimpse of ‘Jack.’ To this day, the genus Arisaema holds great meaning for me. I only wish she could have shared my joy with my latest addition, A. candidissimum! Then again, I’m pretty sure she’s somewhere just out of sight and grasp, confident that I’m carrying on one of her favourite traditions!
I miss you now and always, but find a special ‘closeness’ when I’m alone in the garden, admiring the tranquil beauty of the Shaded Walk. Thank you for instilling in me an element that will resonate forever.