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Report From An Opinionated Gardener – September 12

I visited two lovely gardens in Rochester NY this past weekend, thanks to the generosity of Laurie Burtner who drove me around. On Friday I went to Jed Fox’s and on Saturday spent an evening wandering through Jerry and Karen Kral’s garden. Although these landscapes were completely different in content and design they nevertheless had something in common: the power of love.

You might think this an exaggeration, but it seems to me that it’s obvious when people are delighted with what they’re creating. Be it food, art or a landscape, when something is made with passion, it shows.

When it comes to gardens, that enthusiasm that’s visible to other people also fosters a communication with the plants. The terms “horse whisperer” and “dog whisperer” have become popularized terms for those who have a special interactions with animals, and we’ve often spoke of plant people as having a “green thumb”. In these cases, however, it’s really all about love.

It’s such a gift when someone can take the excitement they feel and cultivate it. It’s a gift to them and to those who can share in what they’ve produced. Every time I visit a garden created by someone who has so clearly taken great joy in their plants and designing the landscape, I come away stimulated and eager to do more myself. It’s infectious, and that’s the power of love.

This pot man greeted me at the Fox garden.

The Kral garden has an older, more established section and this newer area.

And if you think that plants always need to be "spaced appropriately" so they can spread out as they grow, a visit to Jerry and Karen's garden will change your mind.

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