The Garden

The Quarantine Garden. The Pandemic Wildflower Garden. My wild garden.

I sowed a dusty corner of my walled-in backyard with wildflower seeds at the start of last year‘s growing season. A sparse patch of ancient irises already bordered the outer boundary. I added large rocks to keep my pup from laying flat it’s tender shoots to no avail. I fenced the corner again and again. As the puppy grew, the fence grew - not taller, just sturdier. Eventually, a low wrought iron garden fence withstood the interloper. I spent the summer watching my garden grow. A wildflower mix with early whites and late reds, yellow and green all season. Surprises everyday. It was lovely and inspiring. My photographs of the wild garden became a source for painting. I set up my watercolor studio in the third bedroom/office. I painted everyday when it was hot, sunny, dusty or dark outside. A wildflower painting in progress at all times easily returned to in between other work, challenges, and regular puppy interruptions. Keeping calm and carrying on in uncertain times.

I don’t have a green thumb yet the wildflowers grew. I won’t grow anything critters will eat. The ants carried away the grass seed and with our drought grass seems a bad idea. I hope a wildflower garden blooms this growing season as I’ll be staying home and visiting the corners of my wild yard.

The watercolor paintings of my wildflower garden are pretty, mostly. I don‘t, on principle, do pretty pictures. Yet, they are. Their intention is not to replicate the beauty nor the beautiful photograph. They are wrought with the release of worry. The act of doing and creating is their beauty. The death and dying is submerged in wild tendrils, a weedy promise of bud to bloom - a “memento mori.”

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