Today, I am thankful for gardening dreams.
Any book about gardens, written for the pleasure of writing, must have its sources in dreams. The visions of gardens beautiful and retired hover before the imagination, and no real garden, however humble, but is invested in celestial light of cherished hopes of what it may become in fragrant flowers or what it might have been had fortune been kind.
~Lena May McCauley
Gardeners, I think, dream bigger dreams than Emperor's.
The last day of January.
Darn it! No signs of an early spring. Winter continues its slow, dreary march across the region.
I yearn for sunnier, warmer days. While gardeners who live in more temperate climes are already starting seedlings indoors, I kick my garden's dry, frozen ground in frustration. I know full well that I won't be able to plant anything until May.
At least once a week, for an hour or two, I believe that my prayers will soon be answered. The sun shines brightly, and the wind calms to a mild breeze. But that's before the next front moves in, removing any doubt that this season of cold, snow and wind plans to stay for several more weeks.
We laugh when David Lettermen quips that the Nobel Prize committee has asked Al Gore to return his award. Global warming? What's that? After last year's very mild winter, we expected the warming trend to continue.
Actually, I most disdain the winter winds. Ceaseless despite the hour. Whipping buildings. Toppling fences. Scattering debris. Whirling and swirling against the foothills. Stirring up dust. Merciless. Ruthless. "Take no prisoners" nasty.
I guess that I must live in my gardening catalogs for awhile longer. I subscribe to a select few that sell heirloom and xeric plants. I read them in the evening while we watch a favorite PBS program or a climbing DVD. My "plants to buy" list grows with each reading.
Tonight, I study an extremely hardy raspberry bush. I think about planting two or three on the south side of the house, one area that I have yet to landscape. Or, maybe I should select a lovely flowering shrub - perhaps a rare lilac or sturdy viburnum or . . .
Yes, while the wind howls, the snow falls and the temperature plummets, these companies know how to stoke my gardening dreams.
For this blessing, I am grateful.