If you’re a fan of garden-related quotes, you may have already run across this gem from Roman statesman Marcus Tullius Cicero: “Si hortum in bibliotheca habes, nihil deerit,” usually translated as “If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.” That version is spot-on for many of us who enjoy books and plants with equal passion. The more literal translation of hortum in bibliotheca—a garden in a library—lends itself to some very interesting interpretations, including the one that has captured my interest recently: the concept of a “seed library.”
Those of you who follow Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day, hosted by Carol at May Dreams Gardens on the 15th of each month, probably also know about Foliage Follow-Up, hosted by Pam at Digging on the following day. I can barely get my Bloom Day posts done in time, so I don’t usually get to participate in Foliage Follow-Up on the scheduled day, but I figured I’d bend the rules a bit to have an excuse for showing off some leafy highlights from this season so far.
Let’s start with the most distinctive foliage color in the spring-to-early-summer garden: the yellows and yellow-greens…
On the whole, the weather over the last month has been just lovely for gardening here in southeastern Pennsylvania: not too hot, and not too humid, either. The fairly regular rains have been a blessing, as well—I haven’t had to water the garden once since I finished planting about three weeks ago—except for the deluge we got two days ago.
What happens to a garden in the absence of its creator depends a good deal on the person or people who are left with its care. If they are non-gardeners—and yes, though it’s hard to remember, there are lots of people out there for whom gardening is not a consuming passion—they may think of buying the house, rather than the landscape, with the idea of turning the garden back to grass as soon as possible.
Thank goodness for Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day! If it weren’t for the need to occasionally stop and take pictures, I doubt I’d have taken the time to really notice what’s going on in the garden over the past month. Things are looking much tidier now, but it’s taken a lot of weeding and clipping and pruning to get them that way. (By the way, you can see larger, clearer versions of the images by clicking on them.)
When you’re photographing plants and gardens, it’s natural to focus your attention on what’s in the center of the picture. Taking a few seconds to consider the “frame”—the edges of the image—before you shoot can help to enhance the entire photograph.
One thing to think about is the orientation of the image: whether you hold the camera in its normal position to take a photo that’s a horizontal rectangle or turn it 90 degrees to shoot a vertical one. Broad garden shots, large drifts, and low, spreading plants tend to lend themselves to horizontals…