A Garden’s Legacy

Every year as I prepare my garden for winter, I look carefully for praying mantis cocoons hiding in the shrubs. The cocoons look like brown sugar spun around the stems and might end up in my compost pile. The year I decided to downsize and sell my home of 38 years, cleaning up my garden was a poignant exercise. My garden had evolved over the years to perennial beds that now bordered the driveway, surrounded the house and pond and filled the woods with wildflowers.

I am a plant collector. I roam through the perennial tables and potted shrubs of my favorite nursery all season long. What new plant will I find? Where will it flourish in the garden? That fall I clipped stems and wondered — how can I say goodbye to the garden that has nourished my gardening spirit for so long? As my baskets filled with debris, I thought — I will say goodbye with my camera.

All year long, my camera sat on the kitchen table ready to capture special moments — the colors of fall, red berries in snow, the sparkle of summer sun dancing on the pond’s waterfall, brilliant tulips, the yellow carpet of daffodils in the woods. When I finally pulled out of the driveway behind the moving van, tucked in my camera was my garden — ready to travel with me.