Some hobbies and past-times are just part of who you are.
Other things are learned, studied, and perfected.
Sometimes these things become part of you because they were rooted in a little of both.
I love the garden.
I love my flowers and succulents.
I like knowing their names.
I don't know if I chose to love it or if it picked me.
I choose to think my "love" of the garden and flowers grew because of the women who planted the seed and tended to my knowledge. My grandma and mom have a love language of plants and flowers.
Visits to my grandma's house always included a tour of her yard.
In the same way that someone might show off their new home addition, car, or family photos...my grandma reveled in walking you through her head-sized zinnias, Sunset Magazine worthy roses, and tomatoes that make you salivate at the memory.
My mom does the same thing.
A new bloom in the yard or an unexpected plant volunteer is a yard "tour" worthy happening.
Regardless if your car is running in the driveway, she is sure to take you by the hand to proudly share with you her early Narcissis blooms.
You are likely to also take a handful of blooms home.
Blooms in the garden are a shared experience in my family.
This isn't a braggart kind of thing.
This is a love thing.
It makes me smile therefore it must make you smile mentality.
I walked around my yard this afternoon tending to my succulents, sipping my iced coffee and smiling at the potential of spring.
My almond tree is in full bloom and the petals stick to my shoes as I walk the circles of paths through my yard calculating the days until the lavender fireworks begin and the forsythia streaks the blue sky background.
Realization begins as I start snapping pictures to document the countdown that many if not most of my garden joys are from my grandma.
The flowering quince was one of my first new homeowner gifts from her. It is nearly 14 years old.
My lilac has been transplanted twice and is nearly 12 years old.
It smells like Donna Reed.
At least that's what I think.
Donna Reed is the Martha Stewart for me, and I feel like in all her perfectness she must have had one of these and she probably smelled like lilacs.
The iris' have dwindled and been eaten by pesky gophers, but a few remain faithful.
The roses have been pruned and cut to nearly nothing and yet return with a vigor each year to provide a fragrance that transports me to the red steps of grandmas.
The paperwhites have also been transplanted and separated more times than I can count and are my early reminders that spring is on the way.
The old fashioned petunias will return this year, volunteer, and spring from deep within the cracks in the patio and anywhere else the breeze has blown the seed. They are already emerging from behind the bbq.
Their resiliency and faithfulness are the truest metaphor I have to my grandma's love for me. They are cherished more than anyone can understand.
My grandma is nearly 95.
She has years and years worth of springtimes in her memory, and colors of roses in her minds eye I have probably never seen.
She knows proper and improper names of flowers, bulbs, vegetables and plants that would rival any scholars knowledge bank.
Yet, with all that history, sights seen...she will still humor me when she comes to visit and take the tour to see my flowering quince in bloom.
She will still ohhhh and awe at the simplicity of the petals and toughness of this hardy plant.
She will because it's her love language, and she's taught it to me.
So when you come to visit and I burst at the seams to show you my petunias, or that my begonias didn't die in the freeze, know that I love you too...and this is how I've been rooted.