Virginia Gardens

One of the most beautiful gardens I saw in Virginia was at Eyre Hall, a handsome colonial house owned by the same family for twelve generations. We visited at the end of a long spring rain; the atmosphere was shadowy and moist and you could almost feel the family ghosts sighing with relief at the beginning of spring.

You can still catch the mad swirl of Historic Garden Week in Virginia, the 77th anniversary of this glorious fete. If I lived anywhere within a reasonable distance, I would spend the rest of the week dropping in on the neighbors. And if I were suffering from a broken heart (and there seems to have been a rash of them lately among my friends) I would fling myself into the beds of a plantation or two, and find succor in the bleeding hearts swooning around me.

As I am too far north for plantations, and my heart is feeling healthy and whole these days, I have instead been hauling compost around. And I've rather clumsily planted the seeds from the Monticello Garden Shop that I brought back from my recent trip; I can't imagine they will do anything at this late date, but I'm going to try. Northern gardeners stand a chance with them, as the weather has been cool. The packets are beautifully designed, and each one tells a little story of Jefferson's relationship to the plant.


Pamela Terry and Edward said...

In my experience, nothing fills the heart more than working in the garden. There is just something magic in compost and seeds.

Pigtown*Design said...

I was a guest at Eyre Hall a long time ago. Spectacular place, as is that whole part of Virginia.

Anonymous said...

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Margaret said...

A friend just recently sent me this Robert Frost quote, which I love:
PUTTING IN THE SEED by Robert Frost (1874 - 1963) You come to fetch me from my work to-night When supper's on the table, and we'll see If I can leave off burying the white Soft petals fallen from the apple tree (Soft petals, yes, but not so barren quite, Mingled with these, smooth bean and wrinkled pea); And go along with you ere you lose sight of what you came for and become like me, Slave to a Springtime passion for the earth. How Love burns through the Putting in the Seed On through the watching for that early birth When, just as the soil tarnishes with weed, The sturdy seedling with arched body comes Shouldering its way and shedding the earth crumbs.

Unknown said...

Thanks so much for posting this -- I was on the hunt for an interesting gift for my Inlaws for their anniversary. Seeds from Monticello seemed the perfect starting place -- my father-in-law is a history buff who thrives on all things founding fathers; my mother-in-law is a bit of a gardener (ok she HIRES a gardener and has a lovely garden then takes all the credit for it :) ) but still... this was just what I needed.