Tuesday, January 15, 2013

View from the window - a luxuriant spring day

The heart of spring - that time when the world is fresh, and walking out into a garden causes your spirits to soar.  This is a view from Margaret Moseley's sun room window.  The Japanese maple that was only an outline of branches in winter is now lush with new foliage.  The early spiraeas of March have bloomed out, and azaleas (Margaret has many huge specimens scattered about the garden) and dogwoods are just finishing up their yearly spectacle.

When I look at this photograph, I am reminded of the pleasure this garden has brought Margaret.  Many of the plants you see were gifts brought by other gardeners.  I am betting that the hosta that's coming up in the foreground was given to Margaret by her friend Bud Martin, a wholesale hosta grower.  It's likely, too, that a friend came calling with a piece of the yellow creeping jenny that now forms a cheerful mat just outside the window.

In an article written by Southern Living's Steve Bender, Margaret says about her garden, "I think I can name every friend I have just by looking out there."  Likewise, there are gardens throughout the area and many far away that contain plants Margaret has so generously shared.  One of my prized possessions is a pure white Lenten rose (Helleborus hybridus, formerly H. orientalis) from Margaret's garden.  In fact, I was walking up the driveway yesterday in the gloom and caught something out of the corner of my eye.  That original clump is now in bloom, and the stunning white flowers were a welcome sight on a dreary, rainy day.

A photograph I love of Margaret is of her holding a plant she's just dug and put into a pot for me to carry home.  I've heard her called the original passalong lady.  I know there were many before her, but over the years she has certainly done her part in sharing the beauty of her garden with others.


  1. We all need 'passalong ladies' not only for sharing but for encouragement. If Billie Harvey had never broken off big pieces of Hydrangea Mariesii Variegata and said, "Here, stick this in the ground; it will root," I would never have attained the level of propagation ability that I now possess.

  2. At what time of year would one stick a piece of Hydrangea macrophylla directly in the ground and have it root? I've layered plenty, but never just broken off a piece. Did you use rooting powder?

  3. Warm weather, possibly it was mid summer. Since, I've rooted them in early fall and used rooting powder then. Once a piece broke off a regular vintage blue H. macrophylla and i stuck it in an empty pot of potting soil nearby. When it rooted, it bloomed pink. Naturally it went back to blue when I planted it in my garden where acidity abounds.