The Lucky Gardener

Tip-Toeing (?) Through The Tulips
October 5, 2011, 09:58
Filed under: April Fool's, garden design, Matt James, Sanguinaria, Wild Turkey

Much of my childhood was spent in my parent’s gardens. On any given weekend,  I could be seen practicing the arts of digging holes, weeding, cutting grass and raking leaves – usually under some form of duress.

Learning about gardening, however, accounted for less than half of my garden time.

I lived in a neighborhood with dozens of kids, and like most boys and girls, we played outside constantly. Whatever the season, there were always ball games going on in the street and around the neighborhood. Errant throws and hits were indiscriminate in where they landed. Balls were lost to storm drains, overly enthusiastic dogs and into the ‘scary’ woods that surrounding our block. Occasionally a ball got trapped in the groundcover and shrubbery of ‘The Feldman Gardens’. Big mistake, especially on weekends when my dad was home. We all knew this was scarier than the woods could ever be.

Though my buddies Ricky, Danny and Jimmy were by no means immune, I took the brunt of the wrath for our wayward Wiffle balls and missed football touchdown passes.

My father’s booming voice, ”Jonathan!! – get out of the garden!” still rings in my ears, albeit now more fondly than in fear.

Finally, the Springtime weather has brought my son and I out of doors. He keeps busy with toys and games while I am puttering about. We throw a ball together and have fun chasing after them down the hill, under the deck, or…in the gardens!

The first time I watched him retrieve a tennis ball that lodged itself in the newly opened daffodils, I was immediately struck by a new, yet somehow eerily-familiar, sensation.

In our generation of father and son, my footsteps have been followed with his keen love of sport and a corresponding lack of accuracy. Though no windows have yet been broken, way too many airborne launches have found their resting places in my gardens. I’ve endured decapitation of cherished flowers, trampling of coddled perennials and an overall disregard for all of which I work so hard.

The echo of my father’s siren guides me to be more understanding with Richard, but I couldn’t hold back the time a football trashed a favorite Hydrangea.


Richard!! – …

May the circle be unbroken.

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