The Bride’s Garden is made from dirt dug from the postholes for a deck built last summer. The carpenter said kindly: “There’s no organic stuff in that soil.” I said with confidence: “There will be.” (Though I had many doubts, as always when beginning a permaculture bed.) But it was only March, and we added compost and straw and surrounded the mound with a primitive “wattle fence” – short uprights cut from downed wood, with disorderly branches woven in between.
By late summer blue-purple nepeta and lavender set off many blossoms in shades of the wedding orange: calendula, calico hues of yarrow, poppies, and a beautiful crocosmia. Nasturtium spilled onto the lawn and path from the wattle “basket.”
Shirley poppies, like in this painting, filled many a bare patch in the last few summers, but are a lost cause this year. I think my friends, the towhees and sparrows, in their vigorous soil work discovered the poppy seeds.
But in the Bride’s Garden nearly everything survived: nepeta blooms, self-seeded nasturtium have leaves the size of small plates and trailing buds beginning. The orange poppies (a perennial variety) open and wave cheerfully in the wind.
I bring them in the house with calyx still tightly wrapped (singeing the bottom of the stems with a match) and enjoy their unfurling as they open and smooth crinkly petals.
The carpenter would approve of the Bride’s Garden now.