When it comes to gardening, I have many dreams.  I draw the content of these fantasies from my gardening magazines where people with endless incomes, endless sun, and endless space create breathtaking gardens, or from the flower catalogs that I save and devour with the same intensity and excitement as a child with the Christmas toy ads.  I found myself completely suckered into the plant descriptions that raved about the specimens “strong stems, brilliant color, elegant fern shaped foilage, etc…  Something I’ve learned over time is that many of the promising and exciting flowers in my catalogs fail to show up at my nurseries. In my early years of gardening I would literally nursery hop trying to find rare but desired plants.  Since my lifestyle has more children and complexities than during that stage of life, I have started experimenting with a very dangerous hobby.  Ordering plants online!  This first picture is a plant I have long coveted, but never seen at my nursery.  In the past my self-control has kept me from actually buying much from my catalogs, but when I needed to order a flower for a friend I found myself in kind of a shopping craze and before I knew it I had purchased two Dicentra Gold Heart (bleeding hearts).  They arrived today and though small (actually bigger than I expected) they look healthy and seem to already promise to brighten my shady areas and provide their romantic arching stems with delicate pink “bleeding heart” blooms.

My other dream is to have enough flowers to be able to daily bring some of them inside.  You see those pictures of women coming in from a gardening session hefting a basket filled with the seasons beautiful blooms intermingled with their clippers and spade.  How I long to be able to send my artistic daughter out every day to bring in an arrangement to brighten my kitchen, entryway or even bathroom.  In my small yard and with many young plants, I’m usually happy when a particular patch actually makes it to maturity without succumbing to the dangers of the soccer ball or my three year olds bike, or my one year olds  inquisitive and sure fingers.  But today I needed flowers inside, and after roaming the yard I found our old, windbent snowball tree.  I decided that I could certainly afford to deny it of some of its fruits and gathered a large bunch.  Bringing them in I felt a real sense of joy to be able to grow and enjoy flowers.  So even though I don’t have an acre of flowers for cutting, today my table is blessed with the simple beauty of springtime, the memories of my own snowball tree right by our backdoor, and the feeling of luxurious plenty.

Since my dream of an abundance of dispensable flowers is not likely in this decade, my new focus is going to be on enjoying my flowers inside in a very small focused vignette sort of way.  This vase is tiny, but perfect to display a couple of my spring daisies.  I am amazed at how they brighten up a dull space, and how much more I am aware of appreciate the details of their form in such small numbers.  So I will keep dreaming, trying to restrain my mouse from draining my bank account for rare but perfectly needed flowers, and enjoying my cuttings in a miniature sort of way.

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