Friday, April 10, 2015

Taking Root

by Dotti

Let’s have a show of hands. How many of you out there in FOL-land like to take pictures of flowers? I thought so; I see a lot of hands.

Next question: How many of you love to garden? You know, get your hands in the soil, plant seeds, bulbs, starter plants. Yup! I see a lot of hands out there again.

Well, I was a late bloomer {pun intended} when it comes to gardening. Since much of my early life was spent in the metropolitan New York area, flowers just didn’t seem to be on my radar during those years. And even though my British-born grandparents lived upstate in Schenectady {I love to say that!} on a two-acre plot, flowers were still not part of my mindset. My grandfather cultivated a prototypical English cottage garden and grew some simple vegetables but I was oblivious to it all.

Fast forward. The man I married was raised by a mother who loved flowers and gardening and he helped her with much of the upkeep of that garden in his teenage years, cultivating his own love for anything that grows. Still, the first few years we were married, he was in graduate school and we were relegated to apartment living. So flowers were not on my list of Important Things.

But … as soon as we moved into our first house, my husband returned to his roots in the garden. He loves to get his hands dirty and soon he was mowing, planting and transplanting and all the while teaching me about home gardening. For several years, we even had a decent-sized vegetable garden, canning and freezing what we couldn’t eat fresh.

Fast forward a few more years. Our daughter was born and she, too, began to take an interest in gardening as a child. Even when she lived in her first apartment, she found a strip of dirt outside to plant a few flowers. The love of gardening was in her blood and she has always had her own garden.

That brings us up to the present. At seven years old, my granddaughter is finding a love for growing plants, trees, flowers, vegetables. A couple of summers ago she won the prize for tallest sunflower at the children’s library hour! And just a few weeks ago, when we came home from school, she rushed out to our backyard to find that the daffodils had literally bloomed overnight. She was as excited as I was!

So what’s the take away from this?

Only this: it is a reminder to all of us to be open to new things, not to shut the door on new interests just because we’ve ‘never done that’ before, to never say ‘never’.

Flowers are my main photography muse {since my granddaughter has become camera shy} so it’s safe to say I would not be here at FOL if I hadn’t been open to learning new things.  Oh, yes! I like to take pictures of most anything now but my number one squeeze when that camera is in my hands is flowers.

Do tell: what’s your number one photography squeeze?


CarolHart said...

Oh Dotti, your photographs certainly reflect your love of flowers. These are all gorgeous and just bursting with Spring goodness. When I'm working out there, the garden does inspire me to stop periodically and take pictures. I love witnessing the interplay of the plants and wildlife. Reminds me of the connectivity of all living things. What I love about flowers is that in simply doing what they do, their beauty is revealed. Such a gift!

terriporter said...

Funny, when I chose Flowers as our Monthly Focus for April, I knew it was something I would love but I wasn't sure about everybody else. Well, was I ever wrong! As you said, Dotti, who doesn't love flowers? I think even if you're not a photographer, you have to love their beauty. But if you are . . . well, it's a match made in heaven! How wonderful that your husband's mother handed down her love of gardening to him and then he taught you about it and on down the line. Such a wonderful thing to share! Your photos are just stunning! Such a beautiful testament to your love of flowers.

kelly said...

put me in the 'love to garden' group. i love the tactile, sometimes meditative aspect just as much as the beautiful blooms. photography and gardens go hand in hand. :)

jennifer matthews said...

Enjoy seeing everyones beautiful blooms. It’s a month early in my neck of the woods but it’s coming and I can’t wait. I could get lost in my gardens for hours, add the golden hour .... *sigh* ... two hours and hundreds photo’s later

Marilyn said...

Dotti, your flower images are just gorgeous. I enjoyed your story about "new" interests.

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