Guess. What. My pruners are not attached to my belt and I do not have dirt all over me! The sun is shining into my office window on this twenty-three degree Monday afternoon, illuminating the amaryllis that wants to bloom again, and even if I never click to "Post" this entry, I have at least started to write something again. I feel weird without the pruners but they aren't going to turn the pages of seed catalogs or tip tap click clack this keyboard into a full blog post or zip my coat when it comes time to fill the bird feeder..so.. if you guessed correctly, you are probably just as surprised as I am but that isn't the exciting news. The exciting news is that I signed up to take another Barnes hort class!
Last Monday I took my lunch break around the Arboretum because somehow I still have yet to see the whole thing! My feet brought me down to the Stewartias and after their photo-shoot I noticed a sign that pointed to POND. Kiiiind of felt pretty silly when I followed the path past Laura’s teahouse to find amazing lighting and … A pond! First time. I love the shape of the pond. And all the paths around it. I really couldn’t decide where to go or even where to look. Especially with limited time. But I followed a couple paths. It’s still completely outrageous, yes, outrageous! that from age twelve to eighteen I went to school on the other side of the iron fence that now separates the Arboretum from St. Joe’s. And during those years I was right next to such a unique piece of land. Outrageous. Blows my mind.
I didn’t fall in love with gardens and dirt until a few years ago and I didn’t realize my love for art until senior year of high school. So I’m still getting over that but it took me a minute to keep walking around the paths by the pond because I could see the “Main Building” through the fence. I dreaded that circle and getting out of my dad’s car in the morning… most likely because of the incomplete homework assignments or the ….
why was I so reluctant to go to school every day anyway? I guess that needs no answer because I probably wouldn’t have enrolled in the Barnes to learn about plants without some existing connection to North Latches Lane.
I unwillingly followed the flowing leaf-filled paths back towards the parking lot to get my books for Botany. And before I knew it we had cut open some corms and bulbs and I was back outside. Before driving out of the gates I made my routine stop for the second time that day to look for a fallen female cone from the Cedrus atlantica 'Galuca'. I found two halfsies in different places. I will find a full cone some day. I took the time to walk through the medicinal garden after Cone Search #1 to see what the Larix kaempferi (Japanese Larch) might have dropped. I’ve been making candid table arrangements and with Thanksgiving approaching I felt like my diverse Barnes cone collection wouldn’t mind a few new friends. So I turned the corner and …. the bright blue sky!!!! illuminating the Larix!!!!! I couldn’t believe it! Seriously I had no idea that I tree changing color could be so exciting but the needles were bright yellow and only two weeks earlier Mary was saying “I’m surpised this isn’t even beginning to chance color.”
So I didn’t even bother to look for what Mary calls “junk” and I call a pine cone despite my uncle’s distaste for the term and I left to go home because I was satisfied and I had to go serve a turkey dinner to 100+ Penn frat kids.