Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Sneak Peak!

We are almost there...not quite but, almost there!  I can see light at the end of the tunnel and Peter is dreaming of golf again.  Our Grand Opening is Saturday, April 30 when we will be open 10am until 5pm that day. 

Don't forget that the PHilomont garden PHair is also that day, less than a mile down the road  where all sorts of wonderful vendors, events and things celebrating Philomont and spring will be taking place.  But, most of all, don't forget Blooming Hill!

We still plan on hosting an informal creme tea from 12noon until 2pm, rain or shine.  You can read about it in my sidebar.

Then, starting Friday, May 7, we will be open on Fridays and Saturdays from 10am until 5pm and other days by appointment or just call ahead and see if I'm in the garden.  I'm always happy to have you stop by and tour the gardens and see our greenhouse, too.

We've come a long way since that cold, February day when the truck unloaded all of the lumber.  With each day, Peter worked diligently and got a little more done. This weekend, we will finally be open and it's hard to imagine it being anything less.

The shop will have lots of pretty things for your garden and I can't wait for the lavender to be in bloom...just a few more weeks.  Until then, here's a sneak peak at the inside of our little studio/showroom turned garden shop extraordinaire.  You'll have to come on a Friday or a Saturday to see what's in store.  Until then, enjoy this light and airy space. I think those ever elusive and whimsical garden fairies themselves have even graced this place.  It has a magical feel to it.

I had a small map all made just for this occasion but my computer blew up a few weeks ago and I have been having trouble since, so I will give my MapQuest/GPS location. That way, you can find me just as easily until I have my map posted.  I live in Philomont, Virginia just off of historic Snickersville Turnpike. My physical address is: 19929 Telegraph Springs Road, Purcellville, Virginia 20132.  You can always call my on my cell: 703-431-0779  When you see this sign, you know you've arrived at Blooming Hill. Hope to see you soon!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Rain Drops Keep Falling On My Head!

But that doesn't mean my Eyes will soon be turning red, as the song goes, because life is good, this April.  Besides, what kind of a gardener would I be if I complained about a little heavy rain, thunder, lightening, high winds and continual flooding...oh well.  The famous English Gardener, Vita Sackville West referred to April as "the Angel of the Months, the Young Love of  the Year."

Perhaps with all of the extreme weather we have been having of late, "the Young Love of the Year" may be taking things a bit farther afield than we can imagine at the present.  However, the tulips don't seem to be complaining.  Actually,  I think they may agree with Vita's assessment of April.  Well, at the very least, the water table is being built up for the long hot summer which, I garantee, will be a long and hot summer!

The Leesburg Flower and Garden Show was wonderful...if you don't count Saturday of course, when we had to batten down the hatches as best we could and abandon ship--in this case, tent--by 3pm.  The line of terrible thunderstorms were headed straight for Leesburg and the vendors were given a choice of battening down and going home or battening down and heading for the emergency shelter the show organizers had prepared for us, in adavnce.  Being the former girl scout that I am, I chose to batten down, call it a day.  I called Peter who came to help secure everything as best we could, then lowered the tent as low as we could, said a little prayer and headed for home.  On the way home, somebody turned on the water spiggot full force and we were glad that our garden statuary and decor were either weather worthy or packed away in sturdy, sealed plastic boxes.  In spite of all of that, I think my booth was one of the prettiest ever, all decked out in garden finery and frills.

On the other hand, the sun came out and Sunday was perfectly lovely as was the burgeoning crowd of eager "gardening-types" who attended.  I have participated in a lot of shows over the years and have seen a lot of crowds, but this was my first appearance at the Leesburg Flower and Garden Show and  I never saw so many people at one of these events as I saw at this one...phew!  It was crazy but the patrons were friendly and pleasant.  Many of whom I have met over the years and remembered me and my booth.  What's nicer even still, they had come looking for me.  Thank you, thank you, thank you for your kind words and generous support!

While I was dodging raindrops and working on my tan at the Flower and Garden Show, Peter was working hard on the shop--primping, and painting.  This has certainly been his project from the moment the truck arrived with the lumber way back in February. Working as hard as he is, I think he is enjoying this project but won't be sorry to see it completed...very soon! Of course, that's when, the real work begins...We plan to be open 10am until 5pm every Friday and Satuday.

To top off these almost perfect April days, in between the very wet rain drops falling again and again, by Monday evening, our little garden shop began to emerge from it's cacoon as a deep blue butterfly (a la Peter) waiting to spread its wings on Friday, April 30th--our grand opening--which happens with the PHilomont garden PHair that same day in the village three quaters of a mile down the road.  Stop by and browse the shop.  We will be stocking it with lots of gardening surprises and treasures. You can also tour our beautiful springtime gardens 10am until 5pm that day.  If you are one of the lucky few who come between 12 noon and 2pm, and can nab a chair for tea under the garden tent--first come first serve--we will be serving an informal creme tea (scones and tea) prepared by the tea service 2 Broads and a Brit for $12 per person on Saturday (4/30) only. The tea will happen rain or shine!...Let's keep our fingers and toes crossed for shine, shall we?...Afterall, April is not only about raindrops and we are due for some sunshine, too.

This particular April has been adament in her habit of reminding us that, "When clouds appear like rocks and towers, the earth's refreshed with frequent showers."  In any case, after a long winter, it is good to be out celebrating spring at local shows as well as in my own garden, even in the rain.  It's always wonderful seeing you, too--rain or shine!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Blue Orchid

You already know that I have a fetish for garden centers and nurseries, especially at this time of the year when everything is fresh and vibrant so, I won't boor you again with my fascination of all things blossoming in spring time technicolor. However, I do have to bring up a certain "blue-blooded" bloom that caught my eye during my visit last week to Home Depot for yet another huge bag of potting soil.  I am replacing soil in pots and I have a lot of them so I need a lot of dirt and this particular trip resulted in my discovery of this china blue orchid.

It was raining cats and dogs as I passed them, fresh off of the delivery truck and shivering in the pouring rain. Their color was so vivid on that dull and dark day, at first glance, I thought that I was looking at a photograph and had to take a second and much closer look.

Determined to pass them by, I must have circled them at least three times and even checked out and got to the car with my bag of potting soil but, their handsome color kept calling me back and my willpower faded. The orchids, however, stayed true blue in all of their sophistication, loaded with pomp and circumstance. So, I bought one and brought it home to grace my kitchen table.

In the language of flowers, orchids convey magnificence, luxury and, of course, beauty. Their flamboyance brightened the entire room and brought charm and grace to the dreary day.   The creamy, transparent petals reveal blue veins intricately woven throughout that spread and bleed deep azure to their edges. The blue and cream tones change along with the changing light of the day.

This is turning out to be a lovely month where an April shower magically produced a "blue-blooded and very aristocratic flower" for me, giving new meaning to the term, "royal blue." Serendipity in the rain, and now in my kitchen, at its finest!  No wonder why blue is one of my favorite colors.

Oh, and don't forget the Leesburg Flower and Garden Show this coming weekend. If you go, stop by the Blooming Hill Booth for a quick hello. I will be located in the Lightfoot Cafe parking lot. My booth number is 151. Hope to see you there.
                                                                              I'm also counting down the days until my Blooming Hill garden shop opens on April 30th. We are painting and planning the finishing touches for the grand opening tea time. April showers bring lots of wonderful spring events to look forward to and as I go along, I have these extravagant looking orchids to keep me thinking   "nothing but blue skies, do I see."

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Earth Laughs in Flowers

"Earth laughs in flowers," is a wonderful quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson's famous poem. Having visited the garden center of a brand new Loews, of all places, this past Sunday, I think I have to agree. It seems silly, but standing in the middle of the flowers they had for sale there was like standing in the middle of one of their commercials...everything, from the season's earliest petunias and pansies to rock cress and creeping phlox was vibrant with color and personality. I was smitten!

Peter and I went there for wood and various other as sundries that we needed and I told myself, as I do so often when I go to places like this, "I'm only looking!" But what is a "flower-aholic" to do? I mean it's like putting our dog, Tucker, in a room full of squirrels and asking him not to chase them! Do you see what I mean? In any case, everywhere I turned I saw beautiful spring bloomers all in their finest and frilliest best, smiling back at me and I could not resist the eye candy.

As enchanting as flowers are and as happy as they made me, Emerson's underlying message here is more about how we humans think we can readily buy flowers, plants and trees at any garden market or center, plant gardens and cultivate the land and think that we actually own what we grow and tend.  Well, according to our property taxes, we do.  However, the earth knows that these pieces of nature really do not belong to us.  For, who can truly own a flower more than earth itself. Pretty deep, huh? And, when I think about it...it does seem to hold a bit of truth to it. But, you can't blame a "flower-aholic" for trying.

So, after buying just a few things--little pretties I just could not live without--I took a lot of pictures and received a lot of strange looks from other flower patrons at Loews and then reluctantly followed Peter into the lumber department. What a let down after the party atmosphere in the garden center.

On the way home, I had to stop and take a picture of a stand of forsythia at it's peek of frivolity and next to them, the daffodils looking very "daffy-down-dilly" begged to be photographed as well reminding me that the earth does indeed laugh in flowers almost anywhere it wants, especially in spring when everything old is new again.  It may be that I, or anyone else may not own the flowers, trees, birds or bees in Mother Nature's strict sense of the word, but I can surely enjoy their gifts of beauty, serendipity and happiness for at least the fleeting moments that I gaze upon them.  Such is the laugh of a "flower-aholic"...who's laughing now?!"