Insects

Posted on May 15, 2017 in All Blog Posts, Botanical

Insects

Having lauded the glories of gardens and the virtues of vegetables, it’s time to acknowledge those who make it all possible…no, not gardeners….think smaller………..infinitely smaller………yep, insects. Those most beautiful pollinators – butterflies are frequently featured on handkerchiefs. “Butterflies are not insects… they are self propelled flowers.” Robert A. Heinlein, The Cat Who Walks Through Walls Their inspiring metamorphosis from crawling creature to winged wonder has led several cultures to imbue them with the symbolism of rebirth and new beginnings, which is why butterfly images are...

Read More

Fruits and Veggies

Posted on Apr 30, 2017 in All Blog Posts, Botanical

Fruits and Veggies

  Is there anything better than fresh corn, asparagus or vine ripened tomatoes in summer? Fresh blueberry, cherry or strawberry rhubarb pie? Fresh peaches in August? We’re approaching the season that is truly “ripe” with pleasure. You can tout all the highfalutin’ flash freeze phenomena you want; nothing beats the real deal ripe off the vine. “The soil is the great connector of lives, the source and destination of all…Without proper care for it we can have no community, because without proper care for it we can have no life.” Wendell Berry, The Unsettling of America: Culture and...

Read More

Botanical Beauty

Posted on Apr 15, 2017 in All Blog Posts, Botanical

Botanical Beauty

The season of growth and reawakening has arrived. A time when the sun warms both the earth and our spirits, and drops us at the doorstep of restoration. Gardens have for centuries nourished and sustained, inspired and enriched our spirit. They provide both playground and classroom for endless learning. From Buitchart to Boboli to Shalimar Bagan, from Versailles to Villa D’Este, from Giverny to Exbury and beyond. We’ll focus less on the manicured masterpieces of world renown, and instead spotlight the simple pleasures we can all enjoy.   As far back as 450 B.C. the book of Ecclesiastes...

Read More

Butterflies

Posted on Oct 15, 2013 in All Blog Posts, Animals, Botanical

Butterflies

“Butterflies are self propelled flowers.” R. H. Heinlein   Fall is here and it’s migration time for the  magical Monarch butterfly to California’s Monterey Peninsula.  They swarm in drove to frolic and flutter in the eucalyptus groves.  This year’s count – 13,400. Yikes! It’s Match.com for Lepidopteras!  They sojourn from October through February.  You’re welcome to visit the grove and photograph all you like, but touching a butterfly carries a hefty $1,000 fine. Locals take their guardianship duties seriously, and children proudly parade in praise of these pumpkin colored wonders....

Read More

Bridal Lily

Posted on Jun 11, 2013 in All Blog Posts, Botanical, Bridal, Floral

Bridal Lily

One of my absolute all-time favorite flowers is the Lily of the Valley.  Resembling tiny bells or baby bonnets dangling from a slender stalk, the lilies arrive every spring to disperse their heavenly fragrance.  According to the book The Language of Flowers, Lily of the Valley symbolizes a Return to Happiness.  The author opines “It is the sweetest flower imaginable.  With its dainty white bells and unmistakable green scent, it is said to lure the Nightingale from his nest and lead him to his mate.”  Personally, I found it romantic that Kate Middleton chose Lily of the Valley interspersed...

Read More

Bridal Butterfly

Posted on Jun 4, 2013 in All Blog Posts, Animals, Botanical, Bridal, Lace

Bridal Butterfly

It’s June again, and the wedding season is upon us.  It’s a time for celebrations of love, hope and the start of a new life together.  Many of us will attend ceremonies, galas and festivities honoring couples who have pledged  to love, support and sustain one another through life, and, regardless of the statistics, we’re always cheering for love to triumph. One popular image you’ll find embroidered on wedding gowns, veils, and bridal handkerchiefs is the butterfly.  You’ll also find it on christening gowns and bonnets, as the butterfly symbolizes transformation, new beginnings and rebirth....

Read More

Shamrocks and St. Patrick’s Day

Posted on Mar 12, 2013 in All Blog Posts, Botanical, Holidays and Celebrations

Shamrocks and St. Patrick’s Day

    Luck o’ the Irish Faith and Begorrah, it seems anyone with a bit o’ blarney in him is eager to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day – and doesn’t that include most of us?  It’s doubtful you’ll find an Irishman on March 17th who doesn’t have a lucky shamrock tucked in his lapel. Why all the fuss about the lowly shamrock?  This simple three-leafed clover is known as a symbol of Ireland. The name is derived from the Irish word seamróg, which means “little clover.”  Legend has it that St. Patrick used the clover to illustrate the Christian doctrine of the Trinity – Father, Son and Holy...

Read More

Addendum to Roses and Romance

Posted on Jan 31, 2013 in All Blog Posts, Botanical, Floral, Holidays and Celebrations, Romance

Addendum to Roses and Romance

Although Valentine’s Day is still a few weeks away, I’m hopping on cupid’s bandwagon because in today’s culture of texting and tweeting, some guys apparently need a wake-up call when it comes to romance.   A recent lead story in the New York Times decried The End of Courtship, and the details were truly disheartening.  (We touched on this trend in Flirting.)  Apparently Millennial girls are drowning in a tsunami of boys with bad manners. The story opens with a social media manager in Philly, who thought she had a date for Friday night.  The guy finally texted her at 10:30 p.m., with this...

Read More

Roses and Romance

Posted on Jan 29, 2013 in All Blog Posts, Botanical, Floral, Holidays and Celebrations, Romance

Roses and Romance

When I spied this luscious bouquet, it stopped me in my tracks.  I couldn’t help but wonder if the gentleman who bestowed this on his sweetheart longed to give her live roses, but this hankie was all he could afford.     That speculation immediately brought to mind the terrific anecdote about how actress Helen Hayes first met her husband.  (Hayes is one of the select few who have garnered a Tony, an Oscar, an Emmy and a Grammy.) Attending a swanky soiree one evening, bored to tears, Hayes was contemplating how to gracefully exit, when she was suddenly approached by the man who...

Read More