Category: In Nature

In Nature

A Bit of Paradise

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There are people, places, and things, which often leave one with more questions than answers; such was this stop in Pennsylvania, near Wiley’s Bridge, No. 19.

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The stone building beckoned us to stop, and explore both the interior of the structure and the surrounding gardens.

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But had it been a home or perhaps a roadside business? When was it built or last occupied?

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Was this wall built to keep the river out, livestock in, or perhaps as a line of defense?

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Were these bleeding hearts planted by someone or a gift from nature?

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From across the small road we spotted this solitary wall, perhaps standing guard over what his place had once been?

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The workmanship was exquisite; I could not help but wonder what stories this small Eden might have to tell – I do hope we were listening.

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In Nature

A Place of Peace

Recently, I had the privilege of sitting in our friend’s garden, while I waited for everyone to finish their pesky obligations, which were in the way of celebrating a birthday. As I sat there, reading, I could not help but marvel at the beautiful space they had created and all of the wonderful plants that included an amazing gardenia bush, a Jasmin tree, orchids, fruit trees, herbs, and ornamentals.  I thought back to the way the garden looked when they first bought their home, admired the shed they had recently constructed, and felt so very blessed by the tranquility this beautiful space offered.

As spring begins to make her way to us, I thought I would share with you my most favorite place to enjoy outdoors, and urge you – regardless of the environment you live in, to make your own little place where you can be in nature and renew your soul.

Of the various garden areas, under my care, there is no place I love more than my little shade garden; originally I designed it to house my orchids, which require a good deal of shade, something that was in short supply in Florida. These days, it is much more a tranquil home to bromeliads than it is to orchids, but it is still my favorite place to play in the dirt, as my Mother would say.

It is here that I have my potting table, and where I go to re-pot and re-think when and where a plant should live, Joan’s table also lives in this garden space and it is where we eat lunch, as often as we can, and where I receive guest, when I am outdoors – be they people or animals; but it is also where I go to simply sit and be in nature.

Look around you and see where you might be able to put a chair, mine, as you can see it filled with plants, at the moment, do not follow my example, rather this advice – keep yours cleared off, so you can go out there and admired nature.

Whether you are able to put plants into the ground or need to keep them in pots, add something to your world that will flower, then something fragrant like an herb, and as you go, perhaps something that you can watch progressing through various stages of growth, like vegetables or a fruit tree.

Also, do not forget a little touch of whimsy here and there! Your efforts will reward you with peace.

In Nature

Change is Upon Us

I love gardening; I love planting seeds and watching them sprout and checking their growth, and I love harvesting their bounty, be it flowers, fruits, vegetables or just plain beauty that welcomes you in allowing you to entertain, be alone, or chat with God.

This column originally started with my desire to share my garden with you, thus the name. Over the last seven years, of this feature, I have heavily featured my gardens, as well as shared with you various beautiful gardens and plants I have encountered on my travels.

However, I feel this space evolving past its original concept, and believe a name change is in order: Thus In the Garden will now become In Nature.

Our inaugural column In Nature will be A Garden of Driftwood. I hope you enjoy this change.

A Garden of Driftwood

On a perfect sunny day, we strolled along the beach in Northern California and found the beauty of the sea competing with the beauty scattered on the shore.

I will admit it took every ounce of self – restraint to not try to haul some these marvelous pieces home; I so understand why driftwood has inspired artist and carpenters for years.

The impact of the ocean, sun, wind, and time on wood is marvelous; and I am most grateful these pieces have been left exactly where they landed, to be enjoyed by all.

I must that after seeing what Paul can do with wood, it might be much better to imagine hauling wood to his house instead of mine!

In the Garden

Over the River and Through the Woods

As I was making lunch, Kate walked into the kitchen and asked if I would like to go explore the woods, across the river, in our backyard.

I instantly said yes, what a great idea; I then commented on the fact that I did not know she had figured out how to get to our turkey and deer’s playground.

She responded that we will follow their path – literally crossing the river, the way we have seen them do countless times.

It took me a second to realize that on this very chilly day, with temperatures well below freezing, that what she meant was for us to walk over the now frozen river, go down the banks, and walk on the icy path, until we had reached the other side, oh my!

Suddenly, I turned the stove off, and thought what a great idea; an adventure in our own back yard. Since we have lived here, we have watched the turkey’s scamper off to the other side, any time they are scared, and have often spied deer resting in the woods, just out of camera range.  But thus far, the closest we have gotten to the other side, was watching Marcial take a dip in the river.

I must say it was quite a thrill, even if the cracking snow covered ice, along the banks did give way on more than one occasion, stirring a few involuntary o’s and are you sure about this, the exhilaration felt, as we walked upon the frozen river, made me appreciate Marcial’s swim even more.

It was truly beautiful to walk along the river, seeing the animal tracks and the beauty of nature in such a pristine environment; also it was nice to challenge myself, and overcome a bit of trepidation – in case you are wondering, there was one slight tumble, but no one crashed into the river!

Turkey Tracks

The Frozen River

A Closer Look at What I am Sure is Someone’s Home

I Feel Overwhelmed with Joy

Simply Perfect

I Could Not See Any Fish Swimming

A View Worth Crossing the River For

The Frozen Banks

Red or Magenta

I Find this to be Beautiful

Kate on the Other Side of the River

Me on the River

Our House on the Other Side of the River

I Wonder if We Could Start a Fire

In the Garden

Toward the End of the Season




Driving by Route 1, I spied this beautiful pumpkin, and had to pull over! I went into the charming establishment, 2 River Road Inn and Cottages, and asked if I could photograph their garden, a very kind clerk, notified the proprietor, who gave his permission, much to my delight.




Commenting to the clerk, how pleasant the gardens were, she repeatedly told me that I would have to return during the summer, in order to fully appreciate the beauty at its peak – perhaps, but I must say I was not disappointed by what I saw – I think you too will enjoy strolling through this garden!




Of course, as autumn is upon us, it is all about the pumpkins, which are indeed striking!




However, this little bit of paradise invites you to take a stroll through its stunning landscape.




I cannot remember when I have seen so many Dahlia’s; one more gorgeous than the next.




Is not this the most beautiful of views?




I love the trees filled with bird feeders.




A perfect small meadow, with an inviting birdbath that I am sure is a most desirable accommodation during the hot summer months.