Haiku: The Road to…

Some sights inspire, and must be captured. With the camera and the pen.  On Elkhorn Road headed North toward Como, CO and headed straight for a mountain range, the tired and weather-beaten old asphalt is framed in spring by spunky yellow wildflowers. It’s breathtaking.

The Grill-Meister went out of his way to help me get this photo, waiting patiently until there were no cars, giving me advice on the angle, etc. It’s an imperfect representation of what we saw, but…can you feel yourself being pulled toward a bright and unexpected future, on this road lined with bright yellow wildflowers?

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Anything could be possible up ahead. Anything.

Haiku: The Road to…

the yellow road to
endless possibilities –
what lies ahead?

© 2018 Glover Gardens

Happy Earth Day! Join Me for a Walk in the Park

The first of two Earth Day 2018 posts.

fullsizeoutput_23baI’ve lately lamented on the lack of time for the Glover Gardens blog due to time-consuming springtime chores around Glover Gardens. I shouldn’t complain, though, because every hour spent in the spring garden pays off exponentially as the yard comes into full bloom. More on that soon!

Today is Earth Day, a great day to bask in the glory of our wonderful, life-giving planet. My celebration here in the blog comes in a set of nature photos I took recently during a road trip to visit our Musical Millennial at college in Austin. I was at Butler Shores Metropolitan Park, along the edge of Lady Bird Lake. I was killing time waiting for him to finish a rehearsal for the next day’s University of Texas Jazz Orchestra concert, using my new camera to stalk humans and animals around the park and practicing with the zoom lens. This post focuses on the animals, who were perfect models. Like this squirrel – can’t you just hear him saying: “Got nuts?”

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It was a glorious couple of hours on a sunny, cool afternoon as I wandered through the park. Enjoying  the sights and sounds of nature with only my camera as a companion was tranquil and restorative. Just looking at the photos brings me back there – won’t you join me?

A Walk Around Butler Shores Metropolitan Park

A spirited dog chased a frisbee, over and over. 

She posed for me afterward. She acted just like the men in my family when I make them pose for a picture, resigned and mildly impatient: “Just get it over with!”

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There were turtles all along the water, sunbathing. This one was like me, having a solo day at the park.

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These turtles were having a social hangout. I watched them for ten minutes or more as they watched people gliding by in kayaks and canoes, and gently kicked their back legs to keep their log perch floating in their chosen trajectory.

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A purple bearded iris was opening up in the sunlight.

Birds of all kinds were everywhere, darting about and singing. And seemingly, posing.

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The swans did a whole routine for me, turning into synchronized swimmers. A haiku popped into my head when I was watching them, which I’m saving for a post later in the week.

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Thanks for joining the animals and me on this little excursion through Butler Shores Metropolitan Park. And Happy Earth Day!

© 2018 Glover Gardens

Jasmine, the Calming Smell of Spring

Not much has been happening in the Glover Gardens blog, because so much is happening at Glover Gardens. Spring keeps us busy! Not one to shuck a heavy load, Spring is busy, herself. Look at what she’s done with the jasmine. Our whole yard smells heavenly.

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You can almost smell it in the picture!
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Our gate is covered with flowers from a couple of enthusiastic jasmine bushes far to its right

I did a little research on the smell of jasmine and it turns out that Glover Gardens is an aromatherapy district! The Telegraph, a venerable UK publication, said in a 2010 article,

The sweet smell of jasmine is as good as valium at calming the nerves with none of the side effects, according to new research.

Thank you, Spring!

 

© 2018 Glover Gardens

Happy Easter!

These pages have been silent for a short while; so much has been going on at Glover Gardens that there hasn’t been time to stop and chat with you. I miss that! Once I get a handle on things, I’ll be back.

But I don’t want to miss the chance to wish you a Happy Easter. It was a vivid, verdant and temperate spring day here in Southeast Texas. After church, we were surrounded by family, enjoying a meal together here at Glover Gardens, reminiscing, missing our loved ones who were at this table at Easters past, and still, making plans and looking to the future. Easter is like that, with its theme of rebirth, second chances, faith in things you can’t see.  Whatever your beliefs, I wish you the peace that comes from living in accordance with them.

For your visual Easter basket, here’s a photo of a Glover Gardens rose that the Grill-Meister texted to me while I was at work the other day.  (I love it when he does that.)

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Again, Happy Easter. I hope your spring of 2018 is wonderful.

© 2018, Glover Gardens

 

The Yard Misses You! (says the Grill-Meister)

When I travel, the Grill-Meister keeps me posted on happenings at home. I love it when he sends flower photos – they make me feel so connected to Glover Gardens. This week was no exception.  I was in Washington, where it was cold and rainy all week (although I was almost never outside because I was attending a conference), and these pics with the Grill-Meister’s cheery messages provided all the sunshine I needed.

“Frank-biscus is showing off!” (The hibiscus below is named after my Dad; see Death is Life-Affirming: Hibiscus Haiku).

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“….So is Mahogany Splendor aka Hollywood Video….” (The Grill-Meister gives nicknames to many things, and calls this unusual hibiscus with the red foliage and velvety maroon flowers Hollywood Video.)

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“And Yuletide Camellia sez ‘Don’t Forget About Me!'” (This winter beauty is blooming early this year.)

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I love how the Grill-Meister’s shadow is in the photo above, and how he keeps me grounded in the flora of Glover Gardens when I’m away.

Copyright 2017, Glover Gardens Cookbook

 

Mother Nature Does Her Stuff

Going straight from vacation at Little House in the Rockies to work in Europe (I’m not complaining!), I was a little worried about the patio-side plants at Glover Gardens.

The Grill-Meister got home late last night from the post-vacation flight as my flight to Europe was about halfway there. My nagging met him before he landed: “Plants OK?”

A dutiful husband, he not only reassured me, but also sent a picture. The message?

Mother Nature watered your plants for me. Look at all that blue….plumbago looking awesome!”

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Life is good.

Copyright 2017, Glover Gardens Cookbook

“Frank-biscus” Blooms! Just in Time for Harvey

A couple of days ago, I shared a lovely hibiscus haiku written by my cousin’s wife in the wake of my Dad’s death, which accompanied a hibiscus. We named it “Frank-biscus” to honor him.

We have an abundance of hibiscus at Glover Gardens, and I used some of them in the post instead of highlighting Frank-biscus, which hadn’t yet bloomed after being re-potted.

Yesterday, as Hurricane Harvey was sending advance rainstorms to herald his impending arrival, Frank-biscus opened up a beautiful, bright pink blossom!

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To me, this was a reminder from God – during all of the fearsome ravaging brought by the hurricane – that nature is also beauty.

Here’s the haiku again, now properly paired with Frank-biscus.

your much-beloved dad
like this hibiscus flower
blossomed love and life

Copyright 2017, Glover Gardens Cookbook

Death is Life-Affirming: Hibiscus Haiku

Death is life-affirming.

Family gathers ’round when a loved one dies, sharing memories and telling stories, all a reminder both of the value of the life of the lost one and the interconnectedness of those who remain. We experienced this at Glover Gardens recently when my Dad died, rejoicing in the togetherness of family and friends even while we mourned together. In addition to their continual prayers and love, my cousin’s wife brought a gift to our informal celebration of Dad’s life, a live and blooming hibiscus, with a heartfelt haiku.

your much-beloved dad
like this hibiscus flower
blossomed love and life

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Lucy, my Aunt-Mom and Dad’s widow, took this beautiful picture

I’ve posted before about how we love love love both hibiscus and haiku here at Glover Gardens; this gift was as appropriate and welcome as a hug to smooth a hardship – and so life-affirming! A quick little poem, at the second grade level (I couldn’t resist):

I have a wonderful cousin
who has a wonderful wife.
She wrote a hibiscus haiku
to celebrate Dad’s life.

 

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A white Texas Star hibiscus, blooming for the first time on Dad’s death day

Find more about Dad here.

And here’s a tour through our hibiscus flowers (also shared in this previous post).

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Copyright 2017, Glover Gardens Cookbook

~ with help from Marsha (haiku) and Lucy (cover picture) and Dad (inspiration) ~

Digital Postcard: Glover Gardens Hibiscus

I love hibiscus! And hibiscus seem to love Glover Gardens. Here are a few of my favorite Glover Gardens hibiscus pics, a late-summer garden digital postcard.

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I love the bright yellow

 

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A white Texas Star Hibiscus

 

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A red Texas Star Hibiscus

 

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Mahogany Splendor Hibiscus; it’s relatively rare and hard to find

 

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Another Mahogany Splendor

 

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Hawaiian Hibiscus (I think)

 

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A beautiful pink double-bloomer

 

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Tall and leggy Lord Baltimores; that’s Godfrey on the left

 

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A Lord Baltimore, close up

 

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Lord Baltimore Hibiscus, blooms as big as dinner plates

 

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I don’t know the name of this beauty

 

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The red bud to the left is the newest hibiscus, with an interesting shaped-bloom (pics to come)

 

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See the bee?
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Another white Texas Star, which bloomed for the first time on Dad’s death day

 

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A rose peeking through the hibiscus bush

 

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A double bloom, in the midst of opening

 

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Copyright 2017, Glover Gardens Cookbook (feel free to share with attribution and links)