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LivingGardeningGardening in Almonte: Whimsy in the Garden

Gardening in Almonte: Whimsy in the Garden


This past Saturday I made a fortuitous stop at one of the locations on the West Carleton Red Trillium Tour as I was travelling between the opening day of the Carp Farmers’ Market and the Almonte Horticultural Society plant sale.

The artistic creations on display as shown in the following photos were extremely appealing to all ages.

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Denise, the creator of these little gems, is passionate about her creations. She uses all natural materials and spent the winter putting together the ones that were on display. She is offering to work on commission to create something like this in client’s yards (what better use for a tree stump?) or lead in a creative experience at children’s birthday parties. She is also passionate about getting kids connected to nature and gathering materials such as moss and bark to make their own creations.

My own personal experience with grandkids is that are endlessly fascinated by little fairy gardens making up stories and exploring a richly creative imaginative word. And they are outdoors and not in front of a screen!

I often succumb to an instinct for order and space my vegetables evenly lined up in straight rows in precise rectangular beds – not much room for whimsy – I mostly blame my grandmother! I was brought up on a dairy farm in south-western Ontario where I was introduced to gardening at an early age by parents and grandparents – in particular my paternal grandmother liked to take her grandchildren in hand and show us how to plant beans right-side up, create perfectly straight rows with stakes and a rope, and harvest and shell only the plumpest peas. (While she helped to create a love in me for growing food, I must admit that my techniques are a lot more haphazard than hers were.) That emphasis on growing food also makes it difficult for me to devote a lot of time to the flower garden – in my mind whatever I am growing has to be useful – but I’m working on that and learning to appreciate the aesthetic appeal of shrubs and flowers (alright it does help if they are also edible) and perhaps other more whimsical garden creations.




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