I’ve been waiting to write about daffodils quiet on purpose.
I took these pictures almost a month ago,when I put in the vase the very first daffodils from my garden.Each year I can’t wait to pick them and bring inside at least a couple of them,bringing spring to my house. Once I even brought them in the very beginning of winter-on my trip abroad I saw some glass daffodils in local souvenir shop,they were almost forgotten, waiting for their spring among printed t-shirts,some kitschy plastic dirt-catchers and postcards.Fascinated by the virtue of the glass-maker artist en-capturing the structure and transparency of yellow daffodil petals in glass I had to buy them for home.I love this glass plants, but still,as I’ve said the first daffodils from the garden are always something special.And this is the reason for waiting with this post till now-the first daffodils in Golica have started to blossom right now and this really is something special! Golica is a mountain in Slovene Alps, known far around by white daffodils carpets,something worth seeing, indeed.And there is another famous fact about Golica-it has its own song, which is , mentioning worth, one of most listened songs of all times…..
Thank you dear Julie from Butterfly Julz~ Daydreams, Moonbeams & Butterfly Wings..-not only for awarding me, but also for choosing My Botanical Garden as a butterflies friendly place-which it is and which it will stay …….. I promise!
The Liebster Blog Award is named for a German word meaning dearest. The nominated blogger is to nominate five other excellent bloggers. So here are five more of my favorite blogs that I nominate for the Liebster Blog Award.
2)Vicki Winslow’s Blog
3)URI Botanical Gardens Blog
They are all simply the best ;)
OhioYarnFarmer has nominated me for the Versatile Blogger Award-THANK YOU!
Following VBA rules here is a bunch of blogs I enjoy and therefore follow and now nominate for the VBA-THEY ALL ARE GREAT BLOGS!!!!!!!!
1) Okanagan Okanogan
2) Nature Inquiries
3) The Life of Your Time
5) TED Blog
6) Dropping the Science
7) SECRET GARDENER
8) Plant Hertage
10) Home, Garden, Life
11) The Beagle Project
13) Make-A-Difference Month
14) Adventures and Musings of a Hedgewitch
15) Mindful Drawing
And, following the rules again, 7 things about me (today):
1) I walked our dog early in the morning
2) I had my morning coffee with my BF
3) my husband called me from his business trip abroad
4) I’ve been working on a conference for garden volunteers whole morning
5) some journalists called me for the IGL workshop
6) I was happy with the VBA nomination
7) l was happy for the sky was blue today and just everything went fine
It has all started with an old tray I couldn’t throw away.But didn’t know what exactly to do with it either.Remembering my travertine leaf imprint I ‘ve got an idea.I transverted my old tray into indoor garden,putting on display flowering phalaenopsises, pretending to be moths to fly (oh my,don’t we have enough moths pretending they wouldn’t eat my sweater?).I had great time adding little glass fish(which by no means is jelly fish),palm plant and candles resembling stones .As travertine imprinted little leaf for eternity,could the calm setting this little secret garden stay with me forever?Pretending the little glass fish may grant tree wishes,this would be the first one.And you, what would your tree wishes be?
Travertine is a form of limestone deposited by mineral springs, especially hot springs. Travertine often has a fibrous or concentric appearance and exists in white, tan, and cream-colored varieties. It is formed by a process of rapid precipitation of calcium carbonate, often at the mouth of a hot spring or in a limestone cave.
Travertine is one of several natural stones that are used for paving patios and garden paths.
statue from Boboli Garden
Botanical gardens and statues,nature and sculpture-they live one from each other since the first gardens have been set up to nowadays.I decided to use this connection as a concept for the inter generational learning workshop .The idea was to bring together different generations,make them learn together about nature (in botanical garden) and then help them to express new knowledge in art (using clay, learning about sculpture as well).
Preparing the project I was happy enough to meet people who liked the idea.With a lot of coordination, with many ideas exchanged (and some abandoned),with big enthusiasm and with some improvisation, we did it!
Today was the day:early in the morning we all met in the garden.20 kids from gymnasium with two teachers,12 senior sculptors,7 senior garden volunteers,our art professor,some students and some curious garden visitors who joined us to follow the lecture that Mrs.Nina from the garden had prepared for us.It was a rainy morning,but nobody bothered.Did you know that yew was almost extinct in the middle ages in Europe? Why?It’s wood is very elastic and was excellent material to make bows!
After the lecture we all listened to the short introduction into clay sculpturing.And then the work started!And a lot of laughing, learning from each other and helping to each other. Attendants formed smaller groups and each group made one sculpture together.One of the kids was our official photographer-taking pictures all the time,captivating even the professional photographers (from 3 different newspapers ) who came along.
Our statues will be burnt and in May we are meeting together again-to paint our art and to prepare an exhibition in the garden.It will be fun, as some kids-having a quartet of their own offered to give us a concert under the trees at the same time.What to say?Come along-it will be fun (AND learning )!You should believe, for that is exactly what has been said on TV today, where our projet was shown in the prime time!
The only bad news? Guys from TV have borrowed the memory card from my photo, so you will have to wait for the pics till next time ;)
These days I am thrilled finishing the preparatory phase for my first inter generational learning project in botanical garden to happen this Saturday.
2012 is European Year of Inter-generational Solidarity and Active Ageing,for Europe is facing big demographic changes towards society of older people.To sustain such society we will have to change our mindset.Living longer will inevitably rise the need of older people staying active longer,be it in their professional lives or in different fields of their interests, not only for the society will not be reach enough to pay you to be retired 30 years or longer, but also for retirement as known today too often pushes old persons on margins of our society,making them unable to develop their potentials or to contribute to their local community.The only clue to solve this situation is education.Education of older people to recognise, that they are valuable for community and that they are to learn further to stay “on track”.And education of young people and kids against stereotypes about old age, for they will have to live in ageing society. Inter generational learning is a way to make generations learn from each other and to start appreciating each other.
The idea for this project was to cower these mentioned thesis in a innovative way, binding senior garden volunteers,senior sculptors and kids from secondary school on one side, coupling natural sciences and culture on the other side,having a learning workshop and an exhibition for broader audience.The aim? To overcome stereotypes young do have about older people and vice versa, to learn that botany and biodiversity are important issues,to learn that we all need culture-and to spend a day together, in botanical garden, instead of sitting in front of comp or TV at home being alone.
How will it look like?
In the morning we will meet in BG-kids from secondary school with two professors, senior sculptors with their mentor,senior garden volunteers and some professionals from the garden.Together we will have an hour of education about certain plants and their ecosystems.Then we will express this new knowledge in clay and prepare an exhibition in the garden.Hope everything goes well!Promise to post some pictures, but do , please .cross your fingers for the project!
Memories from counties I’ve visited are like kaleidoscopic pictures made from vivid colors, music and noises from far away and-smells and flavors so different from what I know that I remember them forever.One such memory takes me back in eighties,when still living in socialist country but being lucky enough to travel abroad.Returning from our trips to Italy we would always stop in little shops just in front of border,spending last lira to buy some specialities to bring home.Among them was Chinotto,a drink so different from our lives at that time that it remained in my memories as a reminiscence of summers when everything seemed so far away..From those times many things have changed, but the taste of this drink remained the same-sweet and bitter, a bit sour like nothing we’ve tasted before.
Visiting Florence this march I remember by spring colors of Tuscan gardens, smooth flow of Arno river and wonderful smell of orange flowers in Botanical garden –Giardino dei semplici.They have a vast collection of citrus plants. I’ve never imagined lemons in shape of Buddha’s hand or in shape of a pear,that Jews have their own Citron, as also Florence does ,but most intriguing of them all is Bizzaria , botanists needed three centuries to solve this chimera puzzle from Florence .And me? I’ve solved my chinotto puzzle in Florence:- among citrus trees!Citrus myrtifolia, the myrtle-leaved orange tree gives fruit which is used not only to flavor chinotto,but also many Italian amari !
Here are last news about garden volunteers. They are not only working in botanical garden, they are also learning!
Last month garden volunteers learned an old craft-making willow garden obelisks.Gardener from the garden shoved them the materials to be used and then, step by step, the technique of weaving willow.It may look simple, but it is skill ,and you need time to develop proper skill.We had a lot of laughing and we tried hard making something to be at least similar to a decent garden sculpture.And we did it!But the greatest thing about learning this craft was not the sweet feeling of learning something new, but the fact, that volunteers took part in educational workshop in botanical garden next week-helping professional stuff to teach broader public how to make willow garden obelisks! Like the idea that, as good garden obelisk is a strong support for the plants to grow upon it, so the new learned skills are strong support for volunteers to ”grow” knowledge further…….
In Greek mythology Hyacinth was a divine hero.His cult dates from the Mycenaean era .When Hyacinth was killed by Zephyrus, Olymp made flower from the spilled blood of Hyacinth.As this myth talks about death and rebirth of nature hyacinth flower is the one deserving this name indeed.Each year, after winter ,the bulb produces one of the first spring flowers,in wonderful colors, smelling as coming from eternity,giving us hope that after cold winter spring is bringing new chance to everyone………Mozart at only eleven years, in 1767, wrote opera based on Hyacinth story-Apollo and Hyacinthus. From the same time originates also book about rare flowers with botanical illustration of Hyacinth (see link below)…….after 255 springs Mozart music still brings spring, as does hyacinth flower-but I wonder how is with rebirth of Hyacinthus viridis from mentioned botanical illustration , is it extinct yet or hopefully not?
hyacinth-old botanical illustration
But he could detect nothing except a faint sweet lemony scent, rather agreeable than otherwise, which evidently emanated from the bushes budding in the sunshine. He was on the point of resuming his promenade, when a blackbird close by burst into song, and, looking up, Mr. Nilson saw at a distance of perhaps five yards a little tree, in the heart of whose branches the bird was perched. He stood staring curiously at this tree, recognising it for that which he had noticed from his window. It was covered with young blossoms, pink and white, and little bright green leaves both round and spiky; and on all this blossom and these leaves the sunlight glistened. Mr. Nilson smiled; the little tree was so alive and pretty! And instead of passing on, he stayed there smiling at the tree.The Japanese Quince (1910) by John Galsworthy
In early spring,when shrubs and trees mostly still prepare to blossom,one plant deserves all attention. Cultivated for more centuries in Japan, native to Japan and China, now planted in parks and gardens all ower the world, bonsai version included, as it is easy to grow,it turns into a pink cloud each spring.
In autumn the plant produces hard fruit, good enough for preserves but also very decorative when left on shrub.