Rock-a-bye baby

Rock Garden 6-10-09We’ve been so intent on planting the Display Garden that we’ve – not forgotten exactly – and not neglected certainly – but perhaps put off the Rock Garden a little lately. Since it’s at its very cutest now we made sure that the Rockettes (after planting the entire checkerboard bed in the Display Garden) Rockettes planting the kid's checkerboard bedgot a chance to fuss a little over the precious Rock. I’m not entirely sure what makes the Rock Garden so “cute” – it’s not really diminutive, and although rock gardens are often a showcase for tiny alpines that you have to bend down with a magnifying glass to see, ours is not that exclusive – there are sizeable clumps of geranium and iris and columbine and hosta of an average rather than microscopic size along with the wee Alchemilla alpina and tiny campanulas and dianthus. I think there must be something about the poetry in the relationships between the plants and rocks and light and shade that makes this garden too adorable for words.


Lilah and I saw the poets themselves in some of the plant combinations. The ghostly pale spirea and skeletal columbine is Poe of course and the fleshy hosta combinations are as evocative as Neruda. Edna St. Vincent Millay recites the geraniums and Emily Dickinson always has something to say about an “admiring bog”. The violas remind us of Blithewold’s own dearly missed poet, Mary.  And for me there was at least one painterly association but then who doesn’t see Monet in the waterlilies?

Columbine capsules and Spirea 'Little Elf'Hosta, Begonia grandis and HelleboreGeranium sanguineum 'Lancastriense'Coral bells and geraniumhow public like a frogfrog hollowViola cornuta 'Etain'Giverny

Do you ever find yourself reminded of an author or artist as you look around your garden?