I have been considering the transient nature of a garden.
Even though they are made of the most solid matter, of earth, and stone and wood, carbon and water and light, they can pass quickly from glorious to heartbreaking. All it takes is a lack of care, of water, of calm weather and sunshine. Or the need to move on and leave them behind…
I am slowly beginning to contemplate the dismantling of mine. A tenant will not want to browse among the plants in the early morning, admiring new growth and flowers, removing dead leaves and caterpillars. A tenant will not want the bother of stooping to remove weeds from the cracks in the paving, or cut back that long curling arm of passionfruit vine which is threatening its neighbours.
I can’t take everything with me, so now begins the hard job of choosing my favourites amongst my green children. The fruit trees, of course; the flame tree, the bird of paradise, the helliconia, the frangipani, the ferns, the hanging baskets, the petrea, the hibiscus, the orange trumpet vine (if it will tolerate being detached from the fence), the potato bags, cuttings from all the succulents, pups from the ones too large, anything in pots.
It leaves me wondering how it will look once I have dug up and potted the chosen ones. I think I had better get some more mulch to fill the gaps, encourage the other things to sprawl and trail in a way I wouldn’t have tolerated before.
It’s sad to leave it. But the ones that come with me will have Paradise to play in.