My rear is dragging this evening. Jilda and her family are getting Ruby's house ready to sell and so they're giving away furniture and keepsakes to siblings, grandkids, nieces and nephews. The one thing that none of them want is her flowers. It's just too much work.
Ruby was a gardener extraordinaire. She has plants, flowers and shrubs that she has collected for a lifetime. Before she died she gave us a broadleaf tropical plant that is over 35 years old. It is remarkable to look at. She also gave us avocado, lemon, orange, and grapefruit trees that she planted from seed. One day she was sitting on the porch eating a grapefruit....she leaned over and poked a seed in a nearby pot and today we have a grapefruit tree in our living room that touches our fourteen foot vaulted ceiling. There is a pineapple on her porch right now that is full grown and ready to cut and eat.
Every time she visited anyone after the frost retreated north and the days began to get warm and longer, she would asked to go out in their yard to look at their plants. She would invariably leave with a bunch of new plants. Jilda has an Army issue entrenching tool in the trunk of her car and she has dug up what seems like thousands of plants for her mom. When people visited her this time of year they always left with "cuttings" of plants.
Today we went down and I dug up a lilac bush, an azalea, lilies, peonies, hostas, and a truckload of other assorted plants. I could almost hear Ruby giving instructions..."now plant that one in full sun.....that one needs shade.....you'll have to keep 'em watered until the rain sets in."
Ruby always liked me and I think one of the main reasons is that I'm not afraid of hard work. Whenever she needed things moved, cut down, dug up or hauled off, she always called me.
Getting this house ready to sell, neither Jilda nor I could stand the thoughts of leaving all her prized plants because the property is commercial and if it gets bought by a business, the front of the place will probably get paved for a parking lot. So today we went on a search and rescue mission and dug up half her yard and got plants that we'll enjoy for years to come.
I'm tired this evening, but it's a good kind of tired.