My Accidental Garden
I did plan to begin gardening, but my garden nonetheless stared accidentally.
While living in a small community in Davie, FL I made friends with some of the Canadian snowbirds.
They loved gardening, and would return in their RVs each year to the same spot to continue nurturing their flowers.
When the announcement came that our community would be closing, I needed to find a new home and my Canadian friends needed to find new places to winter.
They also needed to find new caregivers for their plants.
I found a new home in in a community on the west coast of Florida. The truck would hold just a few of the plants my friend bequeathed to me. Her French was much better than her English – I didn’t get the names of all the plants, nor all of her lengthy instructions for their care.
Part of getting settled in the new home was transplanting the plants into the yard. I had no idea what I was doing.
So far, it has gone better than expected. Some of the plants that were small enough to fit in our van now tower over my head.
I must be doing something right.
The purple queen that Pierette had given me a handful of, saying “Just soak these in water,” is spreading throughout the backyard. When storms break the shoots I’ve taken to planting the shoots in the front – it looks like they’re going to grow there, too.
Because I don’t know what I’m doing I’m not afraid to try things. Some of those things seem to work.
The datura had a lot of seedpods. I spread the seeds around and now I have seedlings with flower of their own. I’ve transplanted some of them to the front, too.
The zinnias are the most difficult. They’ve had mildew, snails and storms threaten them. But they keep on blooming, and keep on attracting butterflies.
Come September I think I’ll start an intentional garden by planting seeds of my own choice. But I’ll never forget the seventy-year-old woman from Quebec who gave me my first plants.