To fit into any society, a person needs to reflect what is important to the…
Plants Embody Memories
How I remember the day we received the Christmas cactus as a gift.
It was 1986 and a sunny June Sunday afternoon. Rita Mae and I were having a party in the back yard to celebrate our wedding .
We invited some friends, including colleagues from New England College in Henniker, NH where I taught.
Our friend’s two twin daughters supplied the classical music with violin and horn.
Our friend brought us a plant, a Christmas cactus.
Today we still have that plant in the living room.
Though it is alive and growing, it has never had a flower over all this time.
But that is alright.
It is the memory that comes up when we look at the plant.
A memory of that happy Sunday afternoon, oh so long ago.
Sometimes I would see a plant in the garden, and its history would unfold in my mind.
Or I would see a photo from the garden and memories would flow.
Here is a picture I took at Chatsworth, the 300-year-old garden treasure in England, one June day, many years ago. [below]
This yellow vine, at the entrance to the greenhouse, still shines in my memory just as bright as the day I first saw it on our tour of English gardens.
The English garden writer and photographer Graham Rice identified this yellow vine for me.
He wrote, “It’s a laburnum. Usually Laburnum x watereri ‘Vossii’ is chosen for training in this way,”
Anther wonderful feature about plants. They can sometimes enable connections with other people.
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I was lucky enough to stumble across an overgrown churchyard in Norfolk, UK, hidden behind a billowing thicket of lilac and laburnum in full bloom, gold on purple.
Charlott, thanks for sharing this story about the laburnum. I see what it means to you in your remark. That’s all about plants and how we relate to them… Wonderful!