Welcome to my Central Florida Garden Blog where we garden combining Florida natives, Florida-Friendly plants, and tropicals.
Sunday, August 28, 2011
Circle Garden :: Lessons in Patience
When I look today at what's come to be known as the 'Circle Garden' it's a good thing I have some old photos to remember just where it began. It was first created in January of 2010 as a focal point in the back gardens. After (and during) some freezing temperatures that resulted in a very 'brown' garden oodles more lawn was removed and replaced with ground covers and planted beds.
Aren't before and after photos helpful for telling the story and oh, so fun! See all that new growth on the Asiatic jasmine (Trachelospermum asiaticum) in this photo from early spring; March 2011. Not a true jasmine but it was chosen here for the (Florida-Friendly ) ground cover due to its easy care and low-growing habit.
Today (above photo) it continues to work diligently to fill in the space around the container plant that serves as the centerpiece to the circle (side note: dreams include replacing container with a fountain there). Asiatic jasmine makes a dense mat or carpet of glossy greenery and helps define the circular walkway made of natural pine straw. Winding pathways give wandering feet many options. Natural trails carry them into several directions, from the circle, leading to other parts of the garden.
So come with me will you? We'll take a few moments to reflect on the concept of patience and the importance of nurturing those projects in our gardens we lovingly create with lots of back-breaking sweat and humble beginnings.
The beginning. January, 2010 against a backdrop of 'brown' and crispy from many consecutive nights of freezing temps the Asiatic jasmine is just in the ground after removing the lawn in a circular pattern.
Later that year we see some gradual maturity after one of Florida's characteristically hot and humid summers. Complete recovery is evident in the back ground as well as new growth in the circle garden. Patience is key!
Oh dear, January 2011, exactly one year after the circle garden was birthed. The last three winters here have been hard on Florida gardens. But notice the jasmine is evergreen even after our early, record-breaking December (2009) freezes! Patience reminds us that spring is not far away and recovery is again inevitable.
Here we are today. Late August in our hottest, most humid and muggy season and the circle of jasmine is actually *almost* a circle. You may notice the chairs have been changed and moved around during this progression. Those large, weathered Adirondacks were moved to the front garden this past spring when the last trace of turf grass was removed from there.
Established perennial gardens combining Florida natives, Florida-Friendly, and tropical plants fill in the planting beds on the perimeter of the circle.
A view to the tropical pathway reveals the most deeply shaded and probably my favorite place in the garden. I'm not sure it's possible to have a favorite place but I do know this is one of the most peaceful and restful places.
A view in the other direction is the most open side of the back garden. To the north of the circle is the only significant place left where lawn is beckoning removal. I'm determined to ignore the call (and all the ideas that swirl in my head) since that last lengthy patch of green provides the room to play that family get-togethers require.
It's amazing how pictures remind us of our progess. My memory alone surely can't recall just how gradual and yet persistent all at once is the beauty of a growing garden. The lesson :: get started; get growing. Whatever efforts are made whether small or grand are worth the time and energy. In exchange for our toil the satisfaction of listening to our hearts and carrying out our visions is long lasting and beneficial beyond measure to the soul of a gardener.