The objective was simple: enjoy day trips to some of our favourite places in southern Quebec while giving a wide berth to Covid-19 hotspots. We did escape to the Eastern Townships and Laurentians, but not as often as had been imagined. The Delta variant demands respect and we responded by spending most of our free time lost in thought in the garden.
Shade from the ginkgo provided relief from a sticky heatwave that stayed around for much of August. Rarely alone in our backyard, we were joined by Indie, the diminutive cat with a lion-sized personality who resides next door. The patio table, shrubs and flower beds met with her approval, and she found my lap comfortable for siestas.
How did our garden grow? There were a few disappointments, but mostly pleasant surprises. Wildflower seeds haphazardly sprinkled in the spring, germinated and developed into wonderfully tangled ground cover with pint-sized blooms punctuating the greenery. Morning glory seeds planted around the ginkgo and against the kitchen wall grew into healthy vines, but just when it seemed that all we would reap would be luxuriant foliage, on August 15 flowers appeared. Ten sunflower seeds planted in early April had a slow start as they shivered through much of May, June and July. When they began to grow in earnest, five became lunch for gluttonous groundhogs. The remaining five are resplendent! With some luck, they will provide seeds for cardinals and chickadees.
Here’s the message we have taken from the summer of 2021: it’s not where you go or what you do, it really is about stopping to smell the roses.
© 2021 Daniel Wiener