Forest Garden, and all of the Williamsburg area in fact, exist on a series of peninsulas.
We sometimes joke about living on “Williamsburg Island,” because water surrounds our area.
The Chesapeake Bay divides us from the Delmarva Peninsula, and then the Atlantic Ocean rolls in further east.
Our little finger of land is bound by the York River to the north and the James River to our south.
There are so many little creeks and ponds, bays, tributaries, reservoirs and rivers that we cross numerous bridges, large and small, to go anywhere.
Even our “Peninsula”, the term for our area on the local evening news, has its own little peninsulas.
Our geography is formed by flowing water and the tides.
Much of the real estate is at sea level here.
That would be the rapidly rising sea level, caused in part by subsidence; sinking land all around the Chesapeake Bay.
Fringes of marsh border most of the dry land here.
The banks of our main rivers and creeks were recently “hardened” by government contractors bringing in truckloads of granite rock to hold the land in place.
Rock is something we rarely see here, unless it has been imported.
Far more frequently, we see shells.
In fact, it is commonplace to find oyster shells dropped over the garden by a snacking bird.
We love the water.
We love watching its changing moods, and the quality of light reflecting from its surface at all times of day and in all sorts of weather.
We enjoy watching the changing year reflected in the water which surrounds our home.
Like all of the elements on Earth, water can be life-giving or deadly; destructive or beautiful.
Yet we are drawn to live near flowing water.
Our bits of forest are always bounded by water.
And those waterways were once the highways here.
In earlier times, before our modern roads were built, most travel was by small boat.
Most homes were built near water, and the waterways provided a rich variety of clams and oysters, fish, duck, and goose for food.
And so we still are drawn to drink in the beauty of the water views which surround us.
Never attracted to inland life, we find happiness on the edges where land and water meet.
Photos by Woodland Gnome 2014