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Monday, August 25, 2014

Nina's gardens

Last Friday I set out to take some blog pictures I had in mind.
I turned into her house to say hello to my friend, Nina.
The east side of Nina's house.
Perhaps the reason I had hibiscus on my mind.

Most everyone in this old quarry town has scrap sandstone for sidewalk.
Nina has old millstones.

As we were talking I realized I had promised to send my granddaughters to help Nina clear out her "arboretum"--last June. And hadn't.
Well, I could still do something for her, she announced, looking at the camera.
For years Nina has supervised a little garden behind the intermediary school.
First the girl scouts maintained it, "but they all grew up, you know."
Now neighborhood children who attend the intermediary school are the caretakers.
And, Nina would so appreciate some pictures.
So, it was my next stop.
Can you believe this?
I have nothing more to say, until we get up to the "arboretum."

So, up the hill to Nina's "arboretum."
I should have been prepared.

Last spring she said it has been neglected, these last several years she has not been well.
But she felt up to it again, and had rounded up neighborhood children to clear the undergrowth.
The same job I forgot to send Emily and Laura to.

I'm sure a lot of other arboretum fairies were involved,
chipping all the brush,
spreading the mulch.
Nina mentioned one who brought over a chipper,
another who brought extra loads of mulch.

The mulch shovel and bucket.

I know the boy scouts made the new benches.

Years ago, when Nina first decided to adopt this grove
an arborist helped her identify all the trees.
I'm looking forward to asking Nina where the identifying plaques came from.
You know that's another story.


  1. the stepping stones and that large tree with the bucket near it really intrigue me, what a wonderful place to visit.

  2. Hari OM
    We walked with you... YAM xx

  3. I like the bench. Perfect with the trees.

  4. The whole thing is lovely and makes me want some land of my own. One day it will happen.

  5. Lovely gardens and beautiful nice to see folks looking after and improving nature.

  6. so nice to have a woodsy area with the under brush cleared out. I hope someone picks up the task when Nina can no longer do so.

  7. Wow, wow and wow.
    Thank you, and Nina. And the army of elves.

  8. Oh my goodness. Nina is a force of nature. I'll bet she could give a few four-star generals a run for their money.

    1. You put your finger on it, Marty. Nina is in her mid seventies, came out of hardscrabble WV mining country, arrived in town in the sixties, via Maine, married to a civil engineer. I kept thinking of a phrase to describe her as I typed along, and all I could come up with was "she made no enemies." Force of nature is perfect!

  9. When a woman sets her mind to something...
    Jane x

  10. I love the clearing under the trees and the homemade bench! I have a few of those myself. I know just how much work is involved in this, she did a great job!

  11. Nina is to be congratulated. It looks beautiful!

  12. Nina has created a lovely spot for everyone to enjoy -- all with the help of her community. I think it's great when they ID the trees especially for folks like me that forgets some of their names even though I took an ID tree class through a community college! I am looking forward to your plaque info and maybe some tree photos to match up with the trees. You always have a good story to share. -- barbara

  13. Glad to see that Nina is still a driving force. God bless her and also you for remembering. This is a forever friendship.

  14. A great place for a picnic.

  15. It's a beautiful Arboretum! I do love trees all massed together. Love the boy scout made seating.

  16. I've always wanted a tulip tree....

  17. a walkway made of millstones - interesting
    Look like she has a nice shaded area - does she get to relax there much?

  18. Nice garden photos. You did a good job.

  19. It's lovely to hear of such a marvellous community project - I am sure Nina was impressed.

  20. It is all beautiful but I especially like the arboretum and those benches from tree trunks. What a lot of work!