New Adventure: Garden Art

My friend (SH) got me this cute little sign for my garden; little did she know how prophetic this sign is. I am the lady who moved into her first house next to a home of a master gardener. We had a fence between our yards and on my side was a one and half foot stripe of garden that ran the full length of the back yard. I really think it was the barrier between and the garden wonderland adjacent to my weedy back yard.  The first year we lived there I diligently went out and began to pluck this area from front to back. I was about a third of the way down this ten mile (so it was only 40+ feet…looked and felt like ten miles) when my saintly neighbor, Mrs. Mac (short for MacIntosh) looked over the fence and very politely asked me if I would like Mr. Mac to come help me. I immediately knew something was amiss but kept on plucking. About four more plucks from my garden (I use this term loosely), Mrs. Mac said that she would send Mr. Mac over to point out the weeds…Yes I was 1/3 of the way down the ten mile road and had left every weed known to mankind and plucked every flower coming up. Well, isn’t one man’s weed another man’s garden? Guess not.

At this point in my life I had one of those epiphanies…I was never going to have a black thumb! I realized the only thing I was meant to raise was sons and I better concentrate on this because I was an only child and from a family of girls to boot. Mother of sons was going to be a full time job and I had a lot to learn!

I told Mrs. Mac that maybe Mr. Mac should put up a concrete barrier between our fence lines and I would remember to tell Mr. D to put down extra weed killer close to their fence line. I then picked up my trowel and headed into the house to bake cookies (something I was good at and a peace offering to the Macs for failing gardening 101.)

For weeks I had nightmares about weeds and flowers…then I also remembered I had two wonderful Grandmothers whom always had a houseful of flowers and plants. They both were members of the garden club and had beautiful gardens BUT I never remember spending anytime with them in their gardens. The next morning I called my Grandmother who was still living and asked her if I ever helped her in her garden. After a long pause, this saintly woman said, “Gardening didn’t seem to be your thing honey.”  Oh the repressed memories, I was going to be in garden therapy the rest of my life!

I have come to the realization that there are things in my life that I am never going to be great at doing but that does not keep me from admiring the beauty of all these things. Gardening is one… I love a beautiful garden and appreciate all the work that goes into maintaining a garden. And I seem to gravitate to people who love to garden and have beautiful gardens.  AND if I ever win the lottery, I am going to hire a gardener and have that beautiful garden in my yard too.

Back to the reason for today’s post…my friend and I signed up to take this garden art class but ended up going to different sessions: her session (  ); my session ( )

I know; why did I sign up for anything to do with gardening? Here are my reasons (pick one or all): my goal this year was to try several new forms of expressionism; I am planning on wining the lottery and want some yard art; I do these things just for the fun of it and learning something new.

I went this week end (and it was a blast. I met 11 new people; three came from St Louis just for the class, and two other groups of three were families out to have some bonding time. It was so much fun to see everyone’s expressionism and how we each came to this class with our own ideas. Hypertufa is this really cool mixture;  light weight but very strong and can be molded into shapes, carved, covered with a thin layer of portland cement (not all cementis created equally nor is it concrete) or not to make a multitude of garden  art.  The Hypertufa we made is all “green” and does not use peat or perlite but organic additives.  Steve, our instructor and artist,  was so patient with all of us and Davy his assistant got a work-out too. We made a large bowl shape using leaves for the design and covered the leaves with hypertufa then cement, also a square planter, and a gargoyle head in hypertufa and cement. Steve taught us how to cover leaves and make stepping stones out of cememt.  I’m sure Davy is now counting his days until he leaves for college and surely went home and told his family…”Don’t Davy, please …” me for the next two weeks.  I want to go back again, it was just plain fun!  And anyway, I’ve never been anywhere before that I was told “my bottom wasn’t big enough” and “my mouth was too small”.  I love this place! I could make stepping stones, little signs and yard art forever…I know I can have a garden of stepping stones and yard art. Thank you Steve and Davy for a wonderful week-end experience!

I better get back to my real world and stitch. I hope everyone has time to stitch today! ttfn…sue

P.S. Garden pictures are from Steve’s garden. You could have just walked around here all week-end and never seen it all. Beautiful!


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