August 16, 2013

Different Worlds

I am back from visiting other worlds. It felt like that -- to go from my green, leafy suburban garden in the forested east to the dry brown vastness of the west is like going to another planet entirely.

Not only have both of my sons settled in landscapes so different from where they grew up, they both live now in completely urban settings, one in downtown Denver and the other in L.A. To go from my quiet, secluded enclave to their vibrant, crowded city lives is head spinning.

In Colorado the sky and horizon and mountains along the front range are humbling. This was the scene from Red Rocks Amphitheater the night we went to a concert there.

In Los Angeles it's the outsized scale and bustle and flash and artificiality that overwhelm.

I loved every minute of my time with both of them in worlds so strange!

As I mentioned in prior posts, I had a lead on getting a 'Kintzley's Ghost' honeysuckle to replace the plant that was mis-marked and came up as a trumpet honeysuckle despite its label.

And I got it. We drove up to Fort Collins, 45 minutes north of Denver, to the nursery that introduced Dr. Kintzley's unusual vine, and I saw beautiful large pots of them. No mislabeling here; I can see for myself the leaf shape and the whitish round bracts forming.

But putting a plant that size in my carry on bag was not an option. So this is what I brought home, stuffed in my computer bag, x-rayed by TSA and no worse for it all.

I can't wait to get this little plant going in my garden (after I figure out what to do with the very nice but unplanned-for red trumpet honeysuckle.)

When I returned home and reoriented to the greenery and lushness, I was surprised at how the garden had exploded in just the week I was gone. Black eyed Susans filled in, late season panicle hydrangeas are blooming, and the pretty pink fall anemone has towering flower stalks now.



Even a row of marigolds in little pots lined up at the edge of the gravel area grew. They have been blooming all summer, but in their little containers they were small and tidy. Now they are suddenly big and fat.

The 'White Chiffon' Rose of Sharon outside the porch is blooming, and for the first time I can see it through the windows. The porch remodeling proceeded apace while I was gone, and now taller windows have been installed. I am liking this development as much as the new blooming specimens in the garden.

It's always nice to go away and come back.

22 comments:

  1. Welcome home. I can appreciate that feeling of returning from another world. We went to AZ in May so when I returned home it felt so comforting. I have rolled around in my head what it would be like to be a desert gardener. It makes me happy to be where I am. Your garden looks lovely. I bet you really enjoy those big windows too.

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    1. Lisa, thanks. There is a world of difference between AZ and your garden I bet! It's fun to see how plants grow and gardens are designed in different climates.

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  2. Layrrie, the two sons and two worlds, it's true they have their own lives and worlds. Lucky you have the honeysuckle now and I;m sure it will be pretty as others in nursery.
    Lovely view from your windows you have!

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    1. Nadezda, I do feel like my sons live is such different worlds now. I'm so glad I got the honeysuckle I was looking for!

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  3. Wow, that first photo shows an absolutely stunning outlook! What a great shot. You're own green lush garden is looking fabulous, and it's great to hear you got the Honeysuckle of your dreams at last.

    Over here I can offer an great alternative to a green landscape. We in the middle of our dry season and the landscape all around is brown, parched and very dry. Our city is often dubbed 'Brownsville' at this time of year.

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    1. Bernie, that first shot was the sky view before the concert started. The lightning, rainbow, roiling clouds and weather that stretched across the horizon were better than the show on stage. I think your part of the world must look a lot like dry brown Colorado now. Different plants, though!

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  4. Wow. That's quite a shot of the view in Colorado. And a rainbow too? But I share your preference for greenery. I would never want to live in a desert climate, even though I wish I could grow some of those desert plants. Your garden and entire yard is looking stunning.

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    1. Sarah, Not just a rainbow, but constant lightning in the distance along the wide horizon, and dark clouds moving around -- it was beyond amazing for about an hour before the concert even started. I do think that I could live in a dry climate -- it kind of appeals to me despite living my whole life in the green lush east.

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  5. You know you're a plant addict when...you stow away a honeysuckle in a computer bag on a plane. Great story and you'll have a hell of a plant with grand provenance. And it's a honeysuckle so it will be the size of the one you were salivating in the blink of an eye.

    Denver is very dear to me because it's the only place I've gotten to visit since I got paralyzed and it's been three times in 12 years. Craig Hospital is the premiere SCI facility in the world and they had great apartments where I could stay with my family. I'm divorced now never to see the Rockies from I-70 again but I'll always have my memories.

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    1. Patrick, Ha! I guess I am a plantaholic by that definition.

      Denver and the mountains are indeed worth seeing and I'm glad you got there a few times over the past years. But it's gotten so crowded. You'd be surprised if you went back now how busy the roads are. It's a growing place that attracts a lot of people, and the downside of that is the congestion. Still, Denver is awesome!

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  6. Laurrie, you capture well the other-world quality of the West. For those of us who never lived there, it truly looks and feels . . . strange, but awesomely beautiful.

    Welcome back, and congratulations on one of the best souvenirs a traveler can get.

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    1. Lee, the scenery in the west does look strange to my eastern eyes, but I've always wanted to spend time there. Glad I'm home, though!

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  7. Glad you had a good trip! I've been awed by the vastness of the landscape when I've traveled west, too. But I've never been to Colorado--what a fantastic view! It's always nice to come home again, though, especially when all these blooms welcome you. Love the new tall windows!

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    1. Rose, I did have a great trip, but it went by too too fast. But it was fun to come back and see the progress on the porch. You'll have to plan a trip to Colo.!

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  8. I once bought a car in Ft. Collins. A plant would have been much cheaper. :o) Your garden looks great and how fabulous that you were able to bring the plant home on the plant. :o) Your porch looks beautiful! Love those windows!

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    1. Tammy, I guess Ft. Collins is where to go for shopping -- plants and cars and other things!

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  9. Your porch is going to be gorgeous--color me envious! I think you've inspired me to hunt down Kintzley's Ghost locally. I'm so excited you finally, really, truly have it now.

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    1. Heather, I am pretty excited about getting the Kintzley's Ghost too -- an enthusiasm that was lost on my son, but he was a sport to drive me up there to track it down. All he could say was "that's IT??"

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  10. That is a wonderful looking honeysuckle. I hope it acclimates well in your garden. Congratulations on your new porch ... very cool windows.

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    1. Joene, I do hope my Colorado honeysuckle will be okay in my Connecticut garden!

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  11. I love that last sentence. So very true! I always come home with fresh eyes- things that escaped my notice suddenly come into sharp focus.
    I am glad that you were able to get the honeysuckle you wanted. I am unfamiliar with this vine and am looking forward to seeing how it shapes up in your garden. The new windows are great and I bet they let in so much more light- not to mention a better view of the garden.

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    1. Jennifer, Thanks so much! I do hope to post on the success of Kintzley's Ghost next season. It should grow in pretty fast.

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