Thursday, March 20, 2008

A New Gardening Friend

Well, spring has finally sprung here in Nashville and even though a few cold nights still linger in the long range forecast it doesn’t seem, at least for now, that we’re looking at anything terribly threatening. Of course, that could all change at the drop of a hat, but for now I’m choosing to believe that spring is here. It SMELLS like spring and that’s always the best of signs!

When I walked out the door this morning, it smelled earthy and damp and fresh and rejuvenated. It did wonders for my spirit. Spring is the season of renewal–the season of rebirth–the season when everything is clean and sparkling and the bedraggled days of summer are but a mere speck on the horizon. It’s the season when I simply cannot be outdoors enough, soaking up the warm rays of sunshine, feeling the cool, damp earth beneath my fingernails (real gardeners don’t wear gloves!) and that SMELL–that glorious, amazing, wonderful smell. The smell of spring.

I’ve made a new gardening friend that I felt I must write and tell you about. Helen Dillon. Perhaps some of you know her or at least have heard of her. She’s a prolific writer, an amazing gardener and an absolutely delightful person. If you subscribe to The English Garden magazine, I’m sure you’ve read her column that appears in each issue. Perhaps her books have a prominent place in your horticultural library.

We were fortunate to have her visit Nashville last weekend as the keynote speaker for the Nashville Lawn and Garden Show. I was on the roster this year, too, and had the good fortune to follow Helen after her Sunday presentation to a crowd of about 100 serious gardeners. I had the even better fortune of being able to join her for dinner on Friday evening and then take her out afterward for a little “honky-tonking”, Nashville style. You haven’t been out in Nashville unless you’ve been to Robert’s Western World on Friday night to hear The Steve Kelley Band and Brazil Billy–so that’s exactly what we did!

We said our “Goodbyes” after I finished my talk at the show on Sunday afternoon, but it doesn’t take gardeners long to bond. The common thread that is tied to and through all of us who love plants is a very strong tie and I already feel as though I have made a great new gardening friend with whom to trade information, ideas and the occasional chat. I hope Helen feels the same and I hope she had as delightful a time here in Nashville as we had hosting her. The pleasure was certainly ours. Please be sure to visit Helen’s website at

Happy Gardening!

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