30 Dec 2015

That Was Seven Years Ago

Somewhere along the way, seven years have transpired! Thanks to one of FB's 'reminders' it appears than seven years ago I created a post stating that I was working on a gardening blog. At the time it was simply called 'Teza's Garden' - which led to some confusion, as when people responded or left messages [and to be honest, I never in a million years would have thought that anyone who might miraculously stumble upon it, would take the time to leave a response!] they referred to me as 'Teza.' 

Long story short: Outside of gardening, much of my life is taken up by reading, and as someone who works within the horticultural industry, winter was always my time to catch up with my reading regimen. But in 2008, the idea of creating a blog caught my eye, but I digress. One of my all time favourite books has a lead character whose name is Teza. 'The Lizard Cage,' by Canadian author Karen Connelly is a book that I re-read every year. Without fail.

It was my younger nephew, with who and whose family I reside, that steered me in the direction of a blog. I had at the time umteen hundred garden photos, many in albums [how many people remember photo albums?] and some decorating the wall behind my computer. Seemed very complicated at the time, and back then Blogger was not the most user friendly platform, especially for one who wasn't the least bit tech savvy. [How he lost one hundred of his earlier posts - I guess delete meant permanently! Huh!] Once I mastered the whole create and publish function, I put things into high gear and was churning out post after post after post. [ad nauseum!]

I am not sure which came first - my first comment, or my introduction to Blotanical, a platform reserved exclusively for gardeners and their blogs. I want to say Joy came into my life first, and then Blotanical. Regardless, I had my very first comment [outside of family] and even better, this person lived in Ontario! More readers and comments were soon to follow: Anna and Jodi, Grace , Barbara and Deborah. And the list and friendships continued to grow and grow and well... blossom! The local hort society has also given me the opportunity to attend their meetings and pontificate on the world which is my garden, and friends like Julie and Roberta, Kathy and Christine are always popping up at the nursery if only to 'toss the dirt' [garden speak for chit chat!] about some newly discovered plant, enquiring when I will have one for them!

I was lucky enough to get the chance to meet Barbara at one of my all time favourite woodland plant nurseries all of half hour from me - the very nursery where I first got my hands dirty as far as a potential career was concerned -  that of course being Lost Horizons, the penultimate gardener's wet dream if they also happen to be of the shadier, slightly eccentric [read plant snobbish] bent. You are how you garden, am I correct? I was thrilled to be mentioned in a garden memoir that Grace wrote and published [its all about the blues is it not?] and to this day, Joy and I email each other at least once a month. Kingston is on my bucket list for the coming year, as will be a treasure trove of some of the 'kids' that have outgrown their current homes. Fellow blogger Barry Parker, recently relocated to Montreal, gifted me with one of my favourite children, Polygonatum x 'Betberg' - he of the bruised purple foliage. Gardening has never been so thrilling, and is rarely boring!

Its been a lot of fun, this past seven years. Of course there have been trying garden seasons, this past one still rankles the hell out of me as I lost well over a dozen 'children' to weather that was anything but advantageous for them. My plants tend to be somewhat like me - divas when they want to be and downright petulant in the meantime. Hot, dry summers have proven to be anathema to many of them. Of course with me working within the industry, replacements are easy enough to ascertain, though, truthfully, for every death, there is a new challenge waiting in the wings. 2016 is all about the genus Cypripedium. I purchased two stunning Frosch selections this past September, and am hoping to increase that number substantially once I have mastered their equally diva-esque growing requirements. 

Just now discovered the Instagram app that allows you to create collages - you will be seeing a lot more of this format next year, as its the perfect way to document a plant's life cycle from the moment it pops out of the ground...... slow it down boy! Winter is only now showing his long overdue face, which I for am so looking forward to. Garden is safely bedded down so let the cold temperatures and snow fly with abandon!

Alas..... A million heartfelt thank you's to those who have made this journey so utterly enjoyable. To those mentioned earlier, and to those who are only now discovering the intoxicating world of gardening. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!


Anonymous said...

Congrats on seven years of blogging. I always enjoy, my only wish is you would blog more often I love each of your blogs and the beautiful photos and videos. Happy New year

Barry said...

Be careful wha you wish for Glenda. Many thanks for your support and encouragement. Will try and live up to your wish!

cheryl said...

Hi Barry and Happy New Years!
I've always enjoyed your posts. In fact it's helped me in finding plants for my shade garden. I tire of the nurseries around here, one in particular sells plants recently potted without roots. O the horror! I haven't returned in years after the failures.
Have you read The Paper Garden? No? You should! It's an amazing book written by a Canadian. I won't reveal details but I was entranced by her story. We're never too old.
All the best to you for 2016 and I await your informative and passionate posts.

Barry said...

Happy New Year to you as well! Indeed, I have read and thoroughly enjoyed 'The Paper Garden' - and yes - we are never too old! The business of horticulture sure has changed over the years; if its not unrooted divisions, its the bloody supermarkets wanting a piece of the action, and they get much better margins than we small indies....BUT they're as liable to call everything a dandelion, so I keep finding the new, the rare, the unusual, with the hopes that home gardeners like yourself will continue to be as excited as I am! Making a rededicated commitment to my blog in 2016! All the best.

Ms. S said...

I've always enjoyed your taste for the exotic and your passion for the sublime! Seven years well spent!

CanadianGardenJoy said...

Sweetie congratulations ! .. I was so thrilled to find some one in Ontario when you popped up I probably scared the crackers out of you being so enthusiastic eh ? LOL
Isn't it weird how time flys by the older you get (S.Hawking should explain that one to me!) ... I love your new method of collages .. so pretty to show case your gorgeous plants !
Are you getting the enormous amount of rain we are tomorrow ? things are going to be a mess and then of course FREEZE ... fingers crossed our gardens survive it all ...
Again congrats on sticking with the your beautiful blog .. so happy to be one of your friends : ) Take care ! Joy

Barry said...

I want to say it was a discussion about a Thalictrum that sealed our fate, if I recollect correctly! Mine is still going strong, head and shoulders above everything else, the one incorrect placement that I haven't had the heart to change - I think in honour of our friendship! Sorry I am so late in responding to your comment, head has been trying to wrap itself around knitting in the round as I want a slouchy beanie and haven't seen anything I like.... 'it can't be that difficult can it?'..... famous last words. Loads of snow in the last 24 hours, but winter wolf man is loving every minute of it! Will get an email off in the coming days...... promise. Thank you for reaching out all those years ago!