What a difference a little fresh snow and bright sunshine make! Suddenly February doesn’t seem so gloomy. While the mid-Atlantic states were dumped on again, here it snowed from sunrise to after sunset but only piled up about 6-7 inches … just enough to clear dank, grey cobwebs out of this gardener’s soul and make her look back. It was a year ago, at about this time, when I ventured into blogdom. It seems like only yesterday, yet like a lifetime ago.
I started with a passion for writing, thinking, learning, and doing all things gardening, and a need to better feed this passion during times that did not lend themselves to hands-on plant work. Sound familiar other garden bloggers? Like so many who dug into the world of garden blogging before me, I’ve let my roots spread. After my first year I don’t feel so much like a new transplant any more, but like a young perennial just beginning to grow. The past year’s growth did not occur in a vacuum though – it never does – and my constant quest for topics to write about has opened my eyes and my attention to many cool projects, people, blogs, ideas, and opportunities:
- I’ve befriended and followed many fellow bloggers – garden-variety and others (thanks FLXrs ). Debbie at A Garden of Possibilities deserves a special shout out as she and I started blogging at about the same time and became friends as a result. So does my first-born at Morning Buzz, who has been blogging much longer than dear mom and keeps said mom on her toes. I learned invaluable lessons from Jane Boursaw’s blogging class. I discovered the great and supportive bloggers at Blotanical and the constant stream of wonderful photos, information, and ideas they share.
- I’ve learned about blog memes (see a lengthy list at Gardening Gone Wild) and started a meme of my own – GOOPs – fashioned after the fantastically popular Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day hosted by Carol at May Dreams Gardens.
- I followed the White House vegetable garden and the People’s Garden Initiative; Project Budburst, Save the Frogs Day, Frogwatch, Firefly Watch, and the Lost Ladybug project … all worthy programs Sam the citizen scientist oe Joe – or Joene – the gardener can learn from or participate in.
- Those who have followed all along, such as my faithful friend and neighbor Gail, have shared my constant struggles with deer and voles, how I deal with slugs (not pretty, but amusing) and powdery mildew, and in the arrival of our family’s new joy and hopefully my new gardening buddy, Avery. Trust me, as soon as she is walking and no longer stuffing everything into her mouth, she’s getting her first pair of gardening gloves and tools.
I’ve learned how to take better photographs under the constant and steady tutorage of my favorite photographer – who also, by the way, listens to my rants and ideas, quietly provides his guidance and support, and makes my flower arrangements shine– like he did with these peonies and Lady’s mantle blossoms.
And, I’ve embarked on a new quest – becoming certified as a landscape designer – with the full knowledge that I have support from friends and family (some I’ve already tapped, others watch out).
With all this, and the fact that spring starts in 37 days … did you get that … 37 days … my frequently frowny February outlook is definitely much improved.