As I was on my hands and knees attempting to pull a yard full of weeds and having flashbacks of doing chores from my childhood, I heard a voice from over the fence. “Hi there. I couldn’t help but notice you’re doing that the hard way. Just cover them with cardboard and spread bark over top.” Oh really!? From that intriguing tip on, I was like a sponge for any gardening information I could get this lady to tell me. Soon she was inviting me to be her apprentice for arranging wedding flowers, caring for a wide variety of garden plants, naturally preventing pests, and peppering in life advice.
Learning from a Master
Little did I know she was a Master gardener who LOVED to talk almost as much as she loved plants. I soon found I would avoid going over to visit if I didn’t have more than three hours to spare because I couldn’t find my way out of our secret garden in any less time. Learning with Lynn meant stepping into my local escape from 50 hour work weeks and under-appreciation. We jived from day one and despite wanting to stay and never leave her garden and her floral design mentoring, I always had to return to reality and back to getting the bills paid.
One summer she was going away on a long weekend so she asked me to look after their barn cat and water a few special plants we were waiting hopefully to bloom. She has a large rain barrel at the end of her downspout that she had to refresh often so mosquitoes wouldn’t replicate. I got the bright idea to prank her by putting tiny feeder fish in the barrel so she’d be surprised by the movement next watering session. Well, the joke is on me because 5 years later they are beautiful goldfish and I have on multiple occasions had to bring over fish food and reassure her the pump was providing enough oxygen to the water.