Sunday, July 20, 2008

Sunday Stroll-July 20, 2008

Welcome to my garden, for a Sunday Stroll on an extremely hot, muggy July day. The best thing going on in my yard right now is happening in my tall garden (aka the "crazy" garden). Several years ago I read a wonderful book about Monet's garden at Giverney, and was inspired to try to copy that, though of course on a much smaller scale. Monet's garden was actually an experiment in light, and how light was reflected in nature. This was the subject that obsessed him in his painting, and if you've seen much of his work you'll remember all the canvasses he did of water lilies, with the reflections off the water. In the Chicago Art Institute there is a whole wall of canvasses where he painted a haystack at different times of the day, to see how the light changed. His garden was planted purposefully to allow him to experiment like this. He loved tall plants, because he could sit down among them, and look up through them at the sunlight flooding through at various times of the day, or various seasons, and quickly put down paint to capture that ephemeral quality of light.

I am not the painter in the family; I leave that to my husband and my second son, though neither chooses the outdoors for his subject matter. But I do like to sit on the little bench at the back of my tall garden and see how the light is treating my flowers that tower above me. Everything back there is at least shoulder high when I'm standing. Sitting, it becomes a beautiful little haven. At least, until the mosquitoes find me!
Here's the pumpkin update. They've almost doubled in size this week! I can see that the gardener has homed in on about four he thinks might work for competition. Again, the leaves on the vines are about waiste high.

This last one is the biggest by far.

Thanks for strolling with me! To see more strollers, head over to The Quiet Country House.


Rose said...

That is one tall hollyhock! A very interesting post about Monet. I love his paintings, but then I suppose most gardeners do.

I left comments on your last two posts, but one of them got lost (I sometimes forget to hit "publish" I think). I just wondered which stores carry the Heartland products you mentioned.

Joyce said...

Hi, Rose! I'm kind of remiss in responding to comments the last few days. We've been busy, and I'm not online so much (which may be a good thing!).
I've been getting that milk at the Jerry's on Kirby. I don't know if all the IGAs are carrying it.
I don't know how my hollyhocks are so tall,unless they are reaching for the sun in the midst of the other tall plants.

Aisling said...

I love your hollyhocks and goldenrod together. How pretty!

Your neighbors pumpkins are fun to watch!

Thanks for strolling again today.

Crafty Gardener said...

Your hollyhocks are tall like mine. And what a large pumpkin. If you have time come and take a rainy stroll at The Gardener Side

Joyce said...

Thanks ro the invitation to stroll, Aisling! I hope people don't get tired of the pumpkins. I think they're fascinating!

Crafty Gardener-welcome! I'll be sure to drop by.

Cheryl said...

Hi Joyce....I love Monet...he is one of my favourite artists. I love what you have done with your garden, and the hollyhocks are beautiful

amy purple said...

My dad grew a pumpkin one year for something to do. He wanted to see how big he could get it. I don't recall how much it weighed, but I remember it was HUGE! He was out there everyday picking new growths off of the plant!

Green Bean said...

You make me treasure my hollyhocks, Joyce!

And please keep up the pumpkin reports. I'm fascinated. :) I've got a bunch forming but for the most part mine seem to all be banana squash. Guess the pumpkin seedlings were the ones the deer ate. :(

Lady Sterling said...

I love Monet! Probably one of my favorites to lose myself in his works. And if you have Monet, you must have Debussy - another favorite.

What is interesting about your observances, is how so much beauty is in light. How much beauty is in darkness? Not quite so much. Certainly this observance of light and beauty can be manifested in so many ways spiritually.

We live in Georgia with forestry and greenery everywhere. I am learning more and more about different botanicals as well as insects I never knew possible in Urbana, Illinois!

Joyce said...

Lady Sterling-welcome to my blog! We miss you! I'm sure your new location is very different botanically. I hope you have a hill or two down there! That would make up for losing all of us wonderful people.

Joyce said...

GB- all those squash-y plants look alike! I don't know how they make such different veggies!

Roses and Lilacs said...

Love the mix of color in your garden. The goldenrod especially, that wonderful sunny color and the graceful form.

I agree, light is so important. I'm not a painter, but I know it is critical in photography.