Summer Solstice Wishes

Butterfly bush prepares to welcome a hungry bee.

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Today is the Summer Solstice, the longest day of the year.  It is a good day to celebrate our wishes, especially those wishes that have finally manifested for us. 

I first wrote and published ‘A Dirty Hands Garden Club’ in the summer of 2014, and would like to share it with you, again.  I hope that you have found your own community of gardeners, naturalists, conservationists, teachers, artists, and plant nerds, as I have so happily found mine.

WG June 2018

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Asclepias incarnata

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I would love to join  a “Dirty Hands” Garden Club;
One whose members know more about fertilizers
Than they do about wines…

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I’d want our meetings spent wandering through nurseries,
Learning from  expert gardeners,
Or building community gardens…

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Echinacea and Monarda prove beautiful native perennials in our area.

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Not frittered away in chit chat over drinks and hors d’oeuvres .

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Hibiscus syriacus and bumbly

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And all of us would be at least a little expert in something, and
Glad to share what we’ve learned;

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Native ebony spleenwort transplanted successfully into this old stump.

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And we all would love putting our hands in the dirt
To help something grow.

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Lavender is still recovering from the winter.

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My club would collect species, not dues;
Re-build ecosystems rather than plant ivy and  box.

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Caladium ‘Fannie Munson’ with Bergenia and ferns.

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We “dirty hands” gardeners can band together
In spirit, if not in four walls.

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We can share plants and insights,
Instigate, propagate, and appreciate;

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Artemisia ‘Powis Castle’

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Perhaps we can even help rehabilitate 
Some sterile lawn somewhere
Into something which nurtures beauty
And feeds souls….

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Magnolia liliiflora is giving us a second flush of bloom in early summer.

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Others can judge flowers,
Decorate homes at Christmas
And organize tours.
These things are needed, too.

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Hibiscus syriacus, Rose of Sharon, opens its first blooms of the year.

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(But I would rather be out in the garden;
Where cardinals preside over the morning meeting,
And  hummingbirds are our special guests for the day.
The daily agenda ranges from watering to transplanting;
From pruning to watching for turtles and dragonflies.)

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We  wear our muddy shoes and well worn gloves with pride,
Our spades and pruners always close at hand.

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We converse with Nature,
And re-build the web strand by strand,
Plant by plant.

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Yucca filamentosa ‘Color Guard’ with Basil

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If this invitation speaks to you,
Perhaps we can work together
From wherever we might find ourselves
Around the globe.
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Colocasia ‘Mojito’ in front with C. ‘Pink China’ behind

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We can each put our hands in the dirt
and create a garden,

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Nurture Beauty,
And restore health and vitality to our Earth,
our communities, and ourselves, together.

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Native Oakleaf Hydrangea glows in the morning Solstice sun.

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Poem by Woodland Gnome 2014
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“The Holy Land is everywhere”
.
Black Elk

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Photos by Woodland Gnome 2018
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Re-Awakening

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Life is a constant series of awakenings,
Beginning again,
Having a fresh go at it.

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Every dawn brings with it a fresh opportunity
for happiness,
Every season another cycle of growth.

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The old and finished falls away,
Duff, always feeding the soil of creativity. 

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The new bursts into becoming,
Being, finding its own way.

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The roots may grow old,
But the leaf and blossom
Continually re-new themselves.

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Cloaked in pristine promise,
After slumber, comes a new awakening.
*
Woodland Gnome 2018

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For the Daily Post’s
Weekly Photo Challenge:  Awakening

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“The universe is always delivering to us
what we need
for a spiritual awakening.”
.
Erin Fall Haskell

 

Weekly Photo Challenge: Rise/Set

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With my back to the sunset, I watch the moon rise.

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The nearly full moon, a blue moon in March; Easter moon rises into the twilit sky. 

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Buds swell on still bare trees; skeletons waiting to rejuvenate themselves in springtime’s warmth.

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We loop again through our dance around the sun:  Equinox, solstice, equinox, solstice. 

Turning, turning, always returning….

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 Woodland Gnome 2018

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For the Daily Post’s
Weekly Photo Challenge:  Rise/Set

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“The deep roots
never doubt spring will come.”
.
Marty Rubin

Sky Sketchers

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Sky sketches:

Living lines

Tracing history through thin air.

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Reaching ever higher

Every further;

Naked ambition.

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Networking:

Reaching out,

Branching, stretching,

Multiplying opportunities and

Filling empty space with

Proliferating life.

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Ever strong

Dancing in the wind,

Hiding behind fog,

Bending under snow,

Shivering beneath silvery coats of ice;

 yet lithe and limber.

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Timber dream catcher, Sun catcher;

Reflecting first golden rays of sun

and last, warming the winter sky.

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Living web,

Growing thicker with each passing season;

Gnarly, twisted, infested with life:

Sky sketchers.

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Woodland Gnome 2018

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Every Shade of Green

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Every shade of green glows alive.

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Sunlit, sun kissed;

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Infused with energy by Sol;

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Incorporating light into leaf.

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Expanding, moment to moment.

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Chlorophyll:  The Force Multiplier.   

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Every shade of green, growing,

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Fueling root and stem,

Flower and seed.

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Earth magic making buds burst and expand;

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An ancient pattern filled, again and again.

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Alchemy of life,

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How many shades? 

How many shapes? 

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Infinite beauty, 

Green.

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Woodland Gnome 2017

For the Daily Post’s

Weekly Photo Challenge: Green

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Crimson

Oakleaf Hydrangea

Oakleaf  Hydrangea

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Crimson berries, leaves and flowers bring excitement to the garden in October.  As the weather cools, a little visual heat excites.

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Pineapple Sage

Pineapple Sage

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Shades of red in the autumn and winter garden liven up a fading landscape, infusing fresh energy at the end of the season when we most need it.

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Mixed Caladiums with Begonia.

Mixed Caladiums with Begonia “Arabian Sunset’.

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We appreciate these flashes of crimson red as days grow shorter and colder.  Soon, only the holly berries will shine brightly  in the snow.  But what a show along the way!

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Geranium

Geranium

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Woodland Gnome 2016

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Caladium, 'Cherry Tart'

Caladium, ‘Cherry Tart’

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Crimson, cherry, rosy bright;

Melon, scarlet, screaming light.

Tomato, pepper, fiery hot;

Berry, rhubarb, sweet and tart.

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Beautifully Unexpected

october-3-2016-fall-garden-039

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Beautifully unexpected,

Bejeweled with dew,

A gift found growing

In the garden.

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october-3-2016-fall-garden-045

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Not planned

Not planted

Not paid for, but

Not unnoticed …

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october-3-2016-fall-garden-046

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A mysterious, 

Magical manifestation, 

Mycelium

Rising silently from Earth,

Fleetingly fragile,

and

Quite nearly undetected.

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october-3-2016-fall-garden-040

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Woodland Gnome 2016

WPC: Edge

Sandy Bay, which frames one end of Jamestown Island, provides a home for many species of birds in its shallow waters. Bald cypress trees grow along its banks.

Sandy Bay, which frames one end of Jamestown Island, provides a home for many species of birds in its shallow waters. Bald cypress trees grow along its banks.

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Edges and borders;

Boundaries or invitations

To enter elsewhere?

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september-8-2016-birds-014

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Alight from the known,

Venture into

What is not.

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september-8-2016-birds-007

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Borders frame,

But cannot contain

Curious awareness.

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september-8-2016-birds-024

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Where is happiness?

What waits

Beyond the edges?

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september-8-2016-birds-033

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For the Daily Post’s

Weekly Photo Challenge:  Edge

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september-5-2016-parkway-021

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Woodland Gnome 2016

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september-8-2016-birds-004

 

The Gathering

August 19, 2016 birds 012

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Golden sun sinks below the treeline

As  shadows gather and gel into darkness.

The air smells green and damp.

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August 19, 2016 birds 016

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Silvery mist glides across the water;

Softly blurring land and lake,

Lake and sky,

Twilight and night.

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August 19, 2016 birds 001

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A heron waits,

Still and silent,

For the gathering.

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August 19, 2016 birds 014

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Grey on green, green on grey,

Sky on water, night on day;

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August 19, 2016 birds 018

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Boundaries blur and fade

As emerald August evening

Pauses, lingers, but still slowly

Melts  away.

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August 19, 2016 birds 015

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Woodland Gnome 2016

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August 19, 2016 birds 019

 

 

Beloved Begonias

July 27, 2016 morning garden 031
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Beloved Begonias,
Bejeweled, bold;
Bewildering in their variety,
Exotic,  erotic, esoteric, ephemeral
Exuberant-
Phenomenally fantastic;
Tropical travelers,
Insidiously intrepid.
Comforting companions,
Hairy, huge and hard to find;
Beautiful Begonias!
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Woodland Gnome 2016
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July 26, 2016 leaves 042

 

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