Category Archives: Glen Villa

The Darling Buds of May

May 14th, 2013 | 1 Comment »
Shall I compare thee to a summer's day? Thou art more lovely and more temperate;   Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May, And summer's lease hath all too short a date.                        --- William Shakespeare Shakespeare's Sonnet 18 provided the title for H.E. Bates' novel. I never read The Darling Buds of May. Never saw the British tv show, either. But I've seen the buds themselves. Rough winds may be shaking them. but they are blooming gloriously

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Praise for Glen Villa: Site and Insight

May 12th, 2013 | 2 Comments »
A few weeks ago, rummaging around on the internet, I came across a blog written by Allan Becker, Garden Guru. Since he was a fellow Montrealer, I emailed him, suggesting that as neighbours of a sort, with common interests, we should get to know each other. Allan responded quickly, with some good advice. Thanks to him, I modified the layout of this blog to make my photos larger. A random photo, having nothing to do with the content of this post. Except that it's pretty. Can you identify the flower?

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Memorials, Memory Posts and Columns: Commemorating the Past at Glen Villa

May 7th, 2013 | 2 Comments »
What makes a good memorial? This question continues to occupy my mind, and not only because of the memorials I saw recently in Washington, D.C. and wrote about here.   For more than two years I’ve been thinking about a creating a memorial to my mother who died in 2010 at the age of 97, after a full and estimable life.   Already in the woods at Glen Villa now are memorials to other family members. I call these memorials memory posts, and for me they commemorate the lives of people who were

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A river of snowdrops

April 26th, 2013 | 3 Comments »
Last year I dug up, divided and replanted about a dozen clumps of snowdrops. Amazing how a few bulbs will grow with time. According to my (less than perfect) planting records, originally I planted a few dozen snowdrops, ordinary ones that are readily available in most Canadian gardening catalogues.Thanks to an April 2012 blog post from Kathy Purdy of Cold Climate Gardening I decided to split the clumps. They were starting to look a bit overstuffed and I thought it would be worth the time and effort. Was I ever right!

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Spring arrives at Glen Villa! Finally.

April 22nd, 2013 | No Comments »
Glory, hallelujah! Spring is finally here. Last Saturday the temperature rose to 24C (75 F). And suddenly, everything was bursting into bloom. Crocuses have been blooming for a few weeks now, and the suddenly warm day will shorten their life span. No matter. They remain a spot of light in the just-coming-to-life grass. No matter how many I plant, there are never enough. Crocuses shine, even in half-dead grass. Buds are forming on the Cornelian cherry (cornus mas), that most difficult of shrubs to photograph. The individual flowers are small and tucked

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Mud and Maple Syrup: Spring at Glen Villa

April 10th, 2013 | 11 Comments »
This is what's happening in my neck of the woods: making maple syrup. Part of the Sugar Bush at Glen Villa We tapped trees in late February and have only now stopped boiling the sap into syrup. Steam rises as the sap boils down into syrup. It takes 40 litres of sap to make 1 litre of syrup. And to do that, the fire has to be hot. Stoking the fire. This year we will use more than three cords of wood. Not a face cord, a real one, which measures

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In Transit / En Route: Part Three, the final installment

March 19th, 2013 | No Comments »
Several weeks ago I started a three-part series about an art installation at Glen Villa called In Transit / en Route. I posted the first two parts and intended to post the third in week three. But California and all I saw there captured my attention and my blogging time. So the third part of In Transit / en Route went to the bottom of the pile. Finally, though, it is back at the top. So here it is, the third and final installment. If you want to read (or re-read) the

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The Sound of Summer

March 13th, 2013 | 2 Comments »
It seems perverse to write about the sound of summer when winter winds still howl and more snow is forecast. But how better to keep warm than to anticipate? And to remember. For years my husband and I spent our summer vacation with our children at a cottage next door to Glen Villa.  My brother-in-law owns the cottage now, so we visit it regularly. And when we do, I hear the thing I remember best from summer nights  – the sound of the stream gurgling over rocks. The stream by

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In Transit / En Route: part 2

February 20th, 2013 | No Comments »
The In Transit / En Route trail starts at the edge of a field. with a sign that asks a rather odd question. Where are you? Où êtes-vous? As I wrote in my previous post (In Transit / En Route: the beginning), the words aren't easy to read. The letters are small and the words run together with no breaks. Once someone figures out the question, though, it usually makes them laugh. They make a joke, another person responds, and they laugh as they come up with different answers to this question that

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In Transit / En Route: the beginning

February 13th, 2013 | No Comments »
In my post last week I mentioned In Transit / En Route and showed a photo of a clearing in the woods. Here's the photo again.                          In Transit/En Route: the sundial clearing in the woods   Do you see the red sign in the clearing? It is part of In Transit, or En Route in French, an installation I created in 2011. In Transit / En Route is not an installation you can see at a single glance. You have to take time to walk a trail that stretches about a kilometre through the woods. And you have to

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