Sunday, January 11, 2009

Jewelry of the Winter Garden

In these chilly days of January, one is hit by the idea that the garden produces jewels. And we are not talking metaphorically. We are not referring to the fruits of the vines or the trees in the summer, as in, "oh, what a gem of a tomato this is! Doesn't it look gorgeous?"

No. We're talking about a vibrantly red leaf, say, of the Viburnum bodnantense 'Dawn,' hanging on for dear life on the very end of the twig, gravity exerting its will in the guise of an encrustation of crystal ice.

Or buds of that very same viburnum with a dusting of powder snow, a bit before its fragrant flowers break into full bloom later in the season, in February. If one could pluck the bud, encase the entire bit in a solution of permanent crystal ice to wear as a pendant on a chain, one would have a necklace Tiffany's couldn't manufacture under any circumstance.

Or how can one resist the allure of a spray of the thready flowers of gem-encrusted witch hazel, Hamamelis x intermedia 'Primavera,' pinned to the lapel of an elegant suit jacket? No jewelry store, however classy, can match what the garden has to offer, shown below.

And here's a cluster of diamonds from the air; no carbon mine in the earth can yield this bunch up.


Mia Wolff said...

perhaps you should be making such jewels

Sally Yap said...

thanks, Mia
nature trumps my efforts, however...
but one endeavors to keep up