The peonies remind me of a simpler time, when all I knew of “pennies” was that they grew in a bed on the garage side of our house. My peonies are those same peonies, transplanted from that simpler time and place to my own garden.
I remember how my Dad taught us to how to pinch out the side buds and leave the main flower buds so the blooms would be bigger. I don’t do that myself, but sometimes think that I should, just to remember how big those blooms could get.
My Dad often cut the peony blooms early in the morning and gave us bunches of them to give to our teachers. Or sometimes he would cut them and place them in jars of water to take with us on a visit to my grandparents on Memorial Day weekend. Once we arrived at their house, we would spend half the day driving from one little cemetery to another, leaving a few peonies on the graves of great, great-great, and even great-great-great grandparents, learning our family history along the way.
Those were simpler times, when daisies were used to determine “he loves me, he loves me not” or make some other important decision of childhood.
It was a time when I was happy to plant anything, digging in the dirt with a kitchen spoon, dreaming of what my own garden might be like some day.
It was a time when driving out to a nearby woods to hunt for morel mushrooms meant we would return with bags of wild violets to plant, because we knew those were Mom’s favorite flowers.
I want those simpler times in my own garden, to always have a few peonies, a clump or two of daisies, and violets interspersed amongst the flowers. I want to go through my garden gate and be happy with my garden…
And I am.
(Visit My Corner of Katy to see what she and others have going on through their garden gates today.)