Maria von BrinckenGardens – antidotes to the news

The garden is always there. You break your arm – struggle to keep up with work.  But the garden is always there. The headlines here still speak of the Boston Marathon bombings, a broken Congress, terrible – hurricanes in the Midwest, floods, and general mayhem. Those thoughts whirling in my head – I realized I needed to take time to be “in” my garden rather than just enjoy its views from inside.

Enkianthus and Viburnum in bloom in author’s garden. Photo & Design: Maria von Brincken copyrite 2013

Enkianthus and Viburnum in bloom in author’s garden. Photo & Design: Maria von Brincken copyrite 2013

So, early one morning last week on my way to a project installation of one of my designs, I took the time to visit my garden. The photos reveal the plantings that captured my attention that day. I marvelled, enjoyed, and found a certain peace.

In the garden space I attuned myself by listening to the birds, smelling the sweet fragrances, by looking for the newly opened flowers. I let myself notice the colors and forms interacting with each other. Color from flowers or foliage, I was reminded, color draws me into the spaces. And once within the spaces, I experience the garden as a whole entity.

Author’s Hosta Garden. Photo & Design: Maria von Brincken copyright 2013

Author’s Hosta Garden. Photo & Design: Maria von Brincken copyright 2013

So as a designer, I know when I create landscape spaces – entry, back, entertaining, strolling – I will include a sequence of flowering trees, shrubs, perennials, ground-cover, vines, and annuals. Waves of color using foliage and flowers to create picturesque views. Hoping enchantment will result – the kind of enchantment that invites a stroll in the garden, to linger, to take that moment and let it influence the day.

Foliage Combinations. Photo & Design: Maria von Brincken copyright 2013

Foliage Combinations. Photo & Design: Maria von Brincken copyright 2013

I hope you take the time to treasure your garden in place today. I know it changed my outlook that day and looking at the photos now I feel the presence, peace, and contentment of the garden. Enjoy its antidote to the news!

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Maria von Brincken

About Maria von Brincken

Award-winning landscape designer, garden journalist and lecturer, certified practising designer with the Association of Professional Landscape Designers (APLD), former contributing editor to Landshapes magazine. Sudbury, Massachusetts. Read Maria's full blog at A Garden Maker's Notes

2 thoughts on “Gardens – antidotes to the news

  1. As always, you remind be to be in the moment. Thank you Maria. Just listening to your voice makes me feel more peaceful! Now I will go outside and just sit for 5 minutes looking at my garden…..and try not to find fault, but contentment.

  2. So very true, Maria. I like a variation on a bit of self-help philosophy about the value and power of walking and so I swap the word walk for garden, viz
    ” Garden out your worries; garden out your anger; garden out your sorrow; garden out your sadness. And then, as you say, just sit in it and savour it . Wine an enhancement, too.

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