This is my story of a garden

A blog by Barbie Darwin Burr

“The privilege of a lifetime is to become who you truly are.” ~Carl Jung

It started six years ago, as the cheapest, quickest way to stabilize a part of the yard where we ripped out overzealous poison ivy and rangy scrub oak.

The garden was set on the poorest, rockiest, rootiest soil, and built with little more than memories of places I had loved, and time spent outdoors with my dog, Spot. I amassed a lot of information about water, dirt, mulch, light, and temperature, as well as growing, collecting, eating, cooking, saving, and sharing food.

As all of this was happening, I acquired a marble statue of Persephone, and that inspired me to build her a home dedicated to Carl Jung's mythic shadow side. Spot died, how I miss him. Groundhogs, rabbits, and chipmunks encouraged me to shift from vegetables to flowers, and think about the garden as a place to sit and look out at a view. Then there was the cutting garden with dusty miller and dahlias for the wedding. And then there was the wedding, with Newbury Street stylists coiffing hair in my potting shed.

Very soon, I think this patch of land will become something else, although I am not sure what. Before it is a hazy recollection, I want to try and write down the story. It was such a wonderful place.

Looking Back

Here is an old photo of the Green Eyed Dragon. I built this long before Game of Thrones. I wanted a centerpiece for the Veggie Garden, which was six raised beds, each one in the shape of trapezoids, 12x4x2, a foot high, radiating out from the center, like flower petals. …

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The Cathedral

Three years ago, I planted a Redbud in an open area of the woodlands, under some oak and pine. I wait for its tiny pink blossoms and feel relieved when a few appear. They say Redbuds are slow to establish themselves. Cultivated by the Wampanoags for their edible flowers and …

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It’s Not Easy Being Green

The mass of greenery is actually carefully cultivated chaos. I favor pachysandra, elderberry, sweet pepper bush, something evergreen with stinky white flowers, ornamental cherry trees, hosta, and the cedar tree. I rip out ivy, green brier, honeysuckle, errant maple and oak, and bittersweet. Pachysandra is a soft evergreen ground cover, …

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Memorial Day Garden

Mid Spring, and the Garden is blooming. I love my weigela blossoms. My Gram had a weigela in her yard, and she would call me outside to see it bloom. I of course was resentful and sulky for this interruption. I made it clear to her that I could not …

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Making Black Gold

I want to build a compost area, yet I am flummoxed by the prospect. Why do I have such a block about building a compost heap? As with anything, once I actually build one or two, I will have the hang of it. I could build a fish pond in …

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