WPC: Nostalgia



My dad loves Coleus, and I remember watching him plant Coleus and Scarlet Sage, Impatiens, Calaldiums and Begonias since I was a little girl.  He loves growing flowers and tending bright annual beds each summer.

And his love of flowers came from his mother’s mother, who had an overgrown garden of old roses and bright perennials behind her house decades after she was able to go out and tend to it herself.  I remember picking flowers in her garden as a very young child; flowers and mulberries, which we ate over ice cream.




Always the Boy Scout, Dad believes in leaving a place a little better than he found it.  And part of that philosophy always expressed itself in making beds of flowers and cultivating the lawn at each of our family homes.

And he is a talented gardener with an artist’s eye for color and a pastor’s touch for making things thrive.  He still breaks off bits of annual stem and thrusts them into moist soil, somehow coaxing them to root into new plants at his whim.




And now I join him in his gardening projects again.  Others might call me his ‘enabler’ with undisguised disdain.  And that is fine with me. 


Caladiums and Impatiens growing this summer in my father's garden.

Caladiums and Impatiens growing this summer in my father’s garden.


Despite physical handicaps, his gardener’s heart is strong and craves color and flowers as it always has.  Sometimes we openly visit the Great Big Greenhouse together, loading the cart he pushes for us.  The shopping cart is even better than his walker for letting his legs follow where his eyes see something of interest.


One of the Coleus plant we bought together this summer, and shared by rooting cuttings.

This is one of the Coleus plants we bought together this summer, and shared by rooting cuttings.


Other times I quietly leave offerings of little plants on the back patio where he knows to find them, without saying a word about them in front of  Mother.  I’ve filled his tubs with Caladiums this summer and helped him plant a hedge of Coleus beside the back walk.  The Coleus we both love so much. 

Nostalgia can hurt or heal.  We all know this.  But I believe that nostalgia heals when it keeps us in touch with those people and things we love.

Nostalgia helps us share our happiness from generation to generation.


Caladiums in my father's garden.

Caladiums in my father’s garden.


For the Daily Post’s

Weekly Photo Challenge:  Nostalgia




Woodland Gnome 2016

Blossom VII

August 1, 2016 blossoms 005


“If patterns exist in our seemingly patternless lives —

and they do —

then the law of harmony insists

that the most harmonious of all patterns,

circles within circles,

will most often assert itself.”


Dean Koontz


August 1, 2016 blossoms 006


Photos by Woodland Gnome 2016

“What we call chaos

is just patterns we haven’t recognized.

What we call random

is just patterns we can’t decipher.”


Chuck Palahniuk


August 1, 2016 blossoms 001

Blossom I
Blossom II
Blossom III
Blossom IV
Blossom V
Blossom VI
Blossom VIII


One Word Photo Challenge: Eminence

November 13, 2014 cut flowers 001.

The last of summer’s Petunias…

With Appreciation to Jennifer Nichole Wells

and her One Word Photo Challenge:  Eminence

Photo by Woodland Gnome 2014

One Word Photo Challenge: Lavender

Petunias in a pot by the door, after the rain.

Petunias in a pot by the door, after the rain.


Photo by Woodland Gnome 2014

With Appreciation to Jennifer Nichole Wells for her


One Word Photo Challenge: Lavender

Lavender Lovers for more lavender flowers in the garden today.

One Word Photo Challenge: Eggplant No. 2

Petunias with ornamental Oregano, "Kent Beauty."

Petunias with ornamental Oregano, “Kent Beauty.”

Have you ever noticed that once you focus on a thought, it takes hold and begins to grow in your consciousness?

The Buddhists say that we become the sum of our thoughts:

“We are what we think.

All that we are arises with our thoughts.

With our thoughts, we make the world.”

Our little Eggplant with its first flower.

Our little Eggplant with its first flower.

On a more mundane level, once we begin to think about something, suddenly we begin to notice it again and again around us.

It was full on dusk yesterday evening when I suddenly noticed all of the beautiful eggplant colored Petunias growing in baskets on our deck.

June 12, 2014 eggplant 009

I was perplexed.  Why hadn’t I thought to photograph them in the first place?

(And to think that “eggplant” photos might be challenging to find.)

June 12, 2014 eggplant 006

Too dark to photograph them last night, I was up early this morning, waiting for the light.

Fog and light rain cloaked our sunrise,  but there was a break long enough to go outside. And then, I saw “eggplant” again and again.

An ornamental pepper with eggplant colored stems.  How could I have missed it before?

An ornamental pepper with eggplant colored stems. How could I have missed it before?

We magnetize what we think about into our lives.

And it is not always what we desire…. It is what we dwell on mentally that manifests; wanted or unwanted.

That is why it is so important to take control of our own thoughts.   

June 12, 2014 eggplant 016

Our thoughts, however fleeting or random, have the power to manifest in the physical.

“Energy flows where our attention goes.”

An important consideration when we choose what to watch, or attend, or listen to…

June 12, 2014 eggplant 029

And so I choose to continue my quest for beauty, harmony, peace, and  understanding.

A Native American elder often offers the blessing,

“May you walk in beauty.”

May it be so for us all.

June 12, 2014 eggplant 008

Photos by Woodland Gnome 2014

With appreciation to Jennifer Nichole Wells for her 

One Word Photo Challenge: Eggplant


Spring Annuals



Now although my favorite plant catalog has as its motto, “Friends don’t let friends buy annuals;”  we have been shopping for annuals this month.

I love the little starts, already blooming themselves silly, in bright fresh colors.

Salvia and Ageratum

Salvia and Ageratum

Annuals are the “over-achievers” of the plant kingdom, living their short lives with great beauty and gusto!

annual Ageratum

annual Ageratum

Choosing annuals each year is a little like re-painting a room, or choosing a new comforter for an old bed.  It is  an easy way to “redecorate” the patio and the deck with a fresh palette of color in pots and baskets.

So long as they remain well fed and watered, they will bloom from now until frost kills them in late autumn.

May 5 2014 garden 062

On our last two trips to our favorite Homestead Garden Center, owner Joel Patton has been there, and has most generously given me some little annuals to grow out and trial for him.  So I will definitely be showing you those little plants as the season progresses.


Petunias and Bacopa on the right, one of the plants given to me to trial

The Patton family grow many of the herbs, annuals, and perennials they offer at their nursery in far western James City County.  Everything is organically and loving grown, and absolutely fresh and healthy.

The selection is just mind-boggling at this time of the year, and the Pattons stock cultivars you can not find anywhere else in the area.

May 3 2014 afternoon garden 054

And so my great fun at the moment is to construct fresh arrangements of annuals and hang them out onto the empty hooks on the deck, celebrating a new season of growth.

Such amazing colors surrounding us now that the weather has warmed!  I have a  tired back, but a happy heart!

May 3 2014 afternoon garden 056

Photos by Woodland Gnome, 2014

May 7 2014 garden 029

Pentagonal Flowers

Have you ever noticed the beautiful geometry of plants? Some wise men and women in the past looked closely at the world around us, and intuited that The Creator of All must be a mathematician, and that The Creator specifically expresses itself through the geometry of nature.  A great wisdom tradition, which traces its roots … Continue reading

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A new site allows me to continue posting new content since after more than 1700 posts there is no more room on this site.  -WG

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