Friday, February 20, 2009

My Mother's Garden

Today is the 2 year anniversary of my Mother's passing, so I thought it would be a fitting tribute to her memory to post some photos I was pleased to come across recently in one of my albums. I took these pictures with our first decent (for those days) 35 mm camera, in 1977. They show my Mom's abundant garden on our farm, located on the North Dakota prairie.




Mom, in her garden with Benji, the dog. Since it is a cool, northern zone 3 there, nothing can be planted until after Memorial Day....so this is probably around late June or early July. The Corn is up and growing , with Peas in the foreground. (Click on photo to enlarge)





The next three photos were taken in the fall of the same year. Here you can see the Corn...tall and tasseled out, with Squash plants on the right and Cabbages in the left foreground, along with the yellow flowers of Dill in the center. Her garden was not weedless, but it was very productive! I remember Mom enticing us kids with spending money for the County Fair, in exchange for weeding 'X' number of rows in the garden. :-) Some days, supper hour would come and go....the kitchen was silent, and Mom was no where to be found, until we realized she was lost in the garden. I now find myself doing this....there is much to do and time passes so quickly when you're working in the garden!




A huge Cabbage, with two of my (then) little sisters flanking either side. I was the big sister.....the oldest of 6 girls. I have both an older and a younger brother, too, bringing the total to 8 children in our family. These photos were taken on a visit home to the farm, when I was 22.





The flowers at the edge of Mom's garden were beautiful! This old scanned photo simply doesn't do them justice. ( Please click on photo to enlarge and see detail ) Many returned as volunteers from the previous years self-sown seed. There were Bachelor buttons, California Poppies, Marigolds and Zinnias. Behind the flowers is what looks to be Potatoes and a Cucumber patch. We always had dozens of jars of dill pickles on our pantry shelves!

So....there you have it. Proof that I come by my love of growing things quite naturally. Is there such a thing as a gardening gene? :-)


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Mom, your memory is blessed. You were a wonderful example to me in all things, not the least of which was the love and labor you put into your garden and the countless hours spent preserving its bounty to feed and nourish your family. You are dearly missed!





35 comments:

Sheila said...

What lovely photos! Thanks for sharing them with us.

gardenerprogress/Catherine said...

What great photos. Sounds like she was an inspiration for your gardening. How nice to have such wonderful memories of your Mother.

Roses and Lilacs said...

I'll say your mother was a gardener alright! The veggies look great but the flowers are my favorites.

My parents had a huge garden like yours. In fact we grew most of our food and Mom and Grandma canned and froze it. I'll bet your Mom did too.
Marnie

Shirley "EdenMaker" said...

I hope that my kids become gardeners when they are adults. What a compliment to your mother to follow in her footsteps.

I enjoyed your photos.
Shirley

HappyMouffetard said...

Your love for her shines through.

Naturegirl said...

Connie this post touched me deeply as I buried my mother today.
What a wonderful garden and a beautiful tribute to her memory!
hugs NG xo

Kerri said...

Your mother's garden was absolutely wonderful, and that photo of your sisters with the cabbage is so sweet.
What a beautiful flower garden right there with the veggies.
Beautiful photos to bring back sweet memories for you.
My mother was a wonderful gardener too.
Yes, that gardening gene is real, I'm sure! :)
This day is special for us as well. Our son (middle child) turned 35 today.

Chris said...

Thank you for posting those pictures. Seeing Mom, the barn, windmill and her garden brought back many special memories for Dave. I really enjoyed the photos too.

Me said...

Beautiful - thanks for sharing them - history, our own and others is extremely important.

Grace Peterson said...

What an amazing spread. Of course with 8 children to feed, it was big out of necessity. I think there is a gardening gene but it's partly the warm memories that keep us in the garden wanting to recapture what is gone. Sounds a bit philosophical, but oh well. Thank you for the sweet post.

Cat said...

Oh, my dear friend, how lovely that tour of your past was, the siblings, the garden, your mother. What an inheritance she's left you! I'm amazed at the winter squash she was able grow in zone 3. Do you think I should consider hybrids???? Certainly that's what they are, aren't they?

Connie said...

Cat - The gardener gene was somewhat latent and didn't appear until I was able to have my own little garden spot. :-) So, I'm sorry to say I don't know what type of squash Mom grew. However my Dad still grows tons of squash there, a non-hybrid Buttercup variety which he saves seed from each year. They are delicious! I will send you a photo of one of his big squash crops, and would be happy to share some of his seed with you, too.

jodi (bloomingwriter) said...

Connie, this is a loving and lovely tribute to your mother. She must be proud to have such a wonderful daughter (and fellow gardener) even though she's not here with you.

lynn'sgarden said...

Hi Connie, glad to meet you! I love this tribute to your mom...wonderful photos, too! Is the farm still in your family? (I'll have to make time to read your archives). That looked like a lot of acreage to tend. I hope my daughters someday get that gardening gene!
Lynn

Heather said...

Boy, your mom had so much energy and lots of help! I aspire to have a wonderful garden like this. I hope you will post more similar photos in the future.
-Heather

MrBrownThumb said...

Connie,

Those are amazing pictures and how lucky you are to have these memories of your mom.

Thanks for sharing.

Connie said...

lynn'sgarden - Yes, my Dad is 86, still lives on the farm with my brother, and grows a garden every year.

Meems said...

What a beautiful post, Connie.

Your mom's garden was more like a farm... so huge! How in the world did she have time for all that growing and preserving and 8 children? An early supermom.

This was a lovely tribute... I can only imagine how deeply she is missed. Yes, I do think there is quite possibly a gardening gene... and you got it from your mom.

Loved the cabbage photo with your sisters.
Meems @ Hoe and Shovel

Kathleen said...

Your Mom sounds like a wonderful lady Connie and she had quite the green thumb. Her garden was amazing. We had big gardens (I thought ~ not like hers tho) and I remember my Mom canning everything in sight come August & September. I'm a believer in the gardening gene ~ whether it's inherited or learned ~ I'm not sure. Either way, it's good, right? Thanks for sharing your beautiful memories with us.

O.I.M said...

such a beautiful and moving tribute.
irena

Jamie and Randy said...

What a loving tribute to your mother! I know you miss her terribly, Connie. I came from a similar family, six girls and three boys. We lived in a 3 bedroom, 1 bath house!--Randy

Catherine said...

A beautiful tribute to your mother!! Beautiful photos..she had quite the green thumb~yes you have inherited it~it's in your blood Connie! :)
A beautiful post!
Cat

ChrisND said...

That was a wonderful post...it reminds me of summer in my grandmother's country garden in ND. Visits there were always fun -- even when we spend an evening tending the garden.

inadvertent farmer said...

Oh what a lovely tribute to you mom and her legacy! Those are some of my favorite garden photos I have seen in a while. I love the great space they impart as well as the old-fasioned feel. It reminds me of the gardens we had as a child, thanks for sharing! Kim

joey said...

A touching post, Connie. You know our mothers never leave us ... though mine (also my 1st gardening mentor) has been gone for 34 years, she lives beside me, especially in the garden (and kitchen). Hugs. (If interested, I enlarged today's butterfly photo :)

Kim and Victoria said...

What great photos to have. Thanks for sharing them, and some stories about your Mom. Her garden looked fantastic.

Tatyana said...

What a wonderful tribute to your Mom's memory. I hope my sons will remember me in my garden as I remember my Mom in her garden and as you remember yours... Thanks for this post!

gardenpath said...

Lovely photos, and just what I needed to see this cold winter day. I can see where you got your love of gardening.

Susan said...

What a lovely tribute to your mom. Cherish those wonderful memories.

Bren said...

These are wonderful memories. Thank you for sharing your love of gardening with us on the web. You have inspired me to do the same.
Warm Wishes from my Garden in the midwest.

Nat said...

This really makes me wish that I had taken some pictures of my father's gardens before he passed. These pictures are treasures.

Gail said...

Hi Connie, I know you must miss your mother dearly...I miss my mom, too. I learned so much from her, but not gardening~~she didn't care for the outdoors at all...She didn't want to sweat! So many things remind me of her and I can smile as I go through the day...it must be like that for you in your garden or when you see squash;-) Thank you for sharing your memories. gail

FlowerLady said...

What a wonderful tribute and great pictures. This is my first visit to your blog and I will be coming back for more inspiration, in word and pictures.

FlowerLady

Iowa Gardening Woman said...

What a wonderful trip down memory lane.

tina said...

What a wonderful tribute to your mother. It is a gorgeous garden and so full of great produce and flowers, that how could you not garden as you do? She would be proud of you.