Three years ago, on January 26 2013, I wrote my first blog post. Since then I’ve published 170 pieces, an average of slightly more than one post per week.
In my first post, I wrote that I saw the blog as a forum, a place to reflect on my own garden, Glen Villa,
“and about how it got to be what it is. I want to write about art and the installations I’m building throughout the property. But more, I want to share my ideas about what a garden is, what it can be, and why it matters.”
By sharing, I think I really meant clarifying. Because that’s what writing these weekly posts does for me. It forces me to think more precisely, to decide what I want to do, and why.
Over the three years, I’ve written 95 posts about Glen Villa, more than on any other topic, and even a quick review of those posts shows how much the garden has changed in that time. The Aqueduct is the biggest change. This major project modified the way we view and use the garden, shifting the focus from one side of the house to the other.
The gabion wall by the parking area in front of the house continued the reorientation that started with The Aqueduct, changing Glen Villa from a garden with a ‘country’ feel to one that is much more contemporary.
In the Upper Field and in the Asian Meadow, I designed deer fences that allowed that shrubs to grow so much that they all will need a good hair cut, come summer.
I started a new bed in a neglected area beside the house and named it The Gravel Garden for obvious reasons.
I modified plantings at The Skating Pond…
and at the Yin/Yang.
I chronicled the changing seasons at Glen Villa, complaining of storm damage in summer, fall and winter, and bragging about our award-winning maple syrup in spring.
I ‘followed’ a tree, first a contorted hazel that I didn’t really like, then a linden tree that I dearly love.
I wrote about the art installations in the garden, those I designed
and those created by others.
I wrote about plants, including my favourite, Jeffersonia diphylla.
I reviewed gardens and garden books and wrote about people whose work inspires me.
Writing weekly is occasionally a chore but I’m afraid that if I miss one week, I will miss the next week as well. So I keep writing, and I’m glad I do. Writing clarifies my ideas. It helps me determine what works and what doesn’t, and why. It provides a record of what happened at any particular moment and allows me to understand why I did one thing rather than another.
The best thing about writing this blog, though, is getting to know the people who read it. Some of you are friends, some are acquaintances, some are people I’ve met only on line, who I may never meet in person. But to all of you I send a big thank you. Thank you for taking the time to read these weekly posts and for commenting on them. (You can now comment as a guest; I’m told this makes the process much easier. So if you haven’t done so, I hope you will.)
Thank you for sharing your ideas and experiences. Long may it continue!