Friday, July 20, 2018

Echoes of past gardeners

The previous owner of our house in Quebec had lived here for 16 years -- 12 of those year-round, and then only in summers.

He wrote with enthusiasm about the plants in the landscape (in his personal for-sale flyer and website), so we assumed that many of the perennials, shrubs, and trees had been added by them.

But we knew, on arrival, that the paper birches, spruces, and aspens that define our landscape had preceeded them.  And our neighbors had talked about a previous owner, too.

So amazingly, this afternoon, the first post-schoolhouse owner appeared, with a young new neighbor, who brought him over.   This fellow, in his 70's, now lives in Le Bic, the village nearby.  He and his wife did the first renovation of the old schoolhouse and lived here for 25 years, before selling it to Daniel, the antique dealer.

They had built the first garden shed, but more importantly had planted all of the large trees that are now so dominant and beautiful in our acre landscape.

So Daniel and his girlfriend had planted a lot more; they were gardeners, too, especially her, according to our neighbors.

So, I don't know who planted the peonies or the roses or the daylilies.  

But I know that the echoes and footprints of past gardeners exist in this landscape that we now steward, not to mention the wonderful historic house that both helped create.

view from the road, with paper birches

It's a good thing.

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