As the Vernal Equinox draws tantalizingly close, the birds can sense the coming change. Already, their calls are more raucous in the mornings — their numbers are increased on branches excited for above-zero days and equalized day and night.
Where we live, we can’t really count on true Spring weather until later in April but like the birds, our eyes are widening and we stretch ourselves that much closer to the morning sunshine as we urge on the change.
BONUS: I was really happy with this drawing and thought I would try offering some prints, cards, and iPhone skins.Check out our Society6 shop
This post is the second in the “Drawing from Nature” series by Davin Risk. All birds have sprung purely from the imagination and any similarity to true species is entirely accidental.
Throughout my gardening life there have been many plants that I tried to grow with middling success, until I observed them growing in the wild. Sarracenia (pitcher plants), venus fly trap (Dioneae muscipula), episcia, and ginger are just a few that come to mind. Seeing them in their natural habitat helped me understand something about the soil, light, moisture, or the communities they grow in that allowed me to better approximate their needs at home in my own garden and pots.
In June 2011 I travelled to Denver, Colorado to speak at the Denver Botanic Gardens. One of many things I was excited to see in the area were cold hardy cactus growing in the wild. I’ve been growing Opuntia humifusa and other hardy cacti in pots for years and had only recently began to have success with them in the ground. But I still felt that there was something that I was missing.
A pretty typical cactus garden with lots of space between plants. Note that I took this photo on the roof of one of the buildings at Denver Botanic Gardens.
Dear Margaret: Those two words are how each “letter” in this new series will begin, whenever I write here to my friend Margaret Roach of A Way to Garden.
2013 is a banner year for me. In just under 5 months I will turn 40. Hello, overnight occurrences of strangely oversized chin hair, indeterminate body aches, and an unhealthy addiction to Bruce Springsteen’s “Thunder Road” Hello, mid-life crisis.
“So you’re scared and you’re thinking that maybe we ain’t that young anymore.”
I recently watched the comedy “This is 40” and while I have no illusions that a Hollywood film will “get me” and portray a reality that I know, I walked away feeling somewhat fortunate (or was it superior?) in that while my 40th may be A LOT flabbier and is not heralded forward with a full-service catered tent party in an expensive and dully landscaped flush suburban backyard, a decade’s worth of therapy has prepared me so that it is (at least I think) a lot less CRAYZZEE.
Anyways, just last month, my Internet website, “celebrated” its 13th webiversary. It’s hard to believe that I’ve been writing here about gardening in some form for 13 years. Did you say recently that you’ve been writing about gardening for 25 years? I never expected to be doing this for such a long time, but then again, I didn’t start off with many expectations period, so its all a bit of a surprise. 13 years later and I have changed careers, written books I didn’t know were in me, and experienced a host of wonderful, frightening, and sometimes surreal things… all because I wanted to create a love letter to plants and meet likeminded people. Life is funny.
My sticks on fire (Euphorbia tirucalli) is blooming! The flowers are so wee, I almost missed them. They’re not much to write home about (or on a website for that matter), but it was such a monumental occasion, I felt it warranted pulling out the camera and posting about it anyway.
Hello, and welcome to the start of something a bit different here on You Grow Girl.
First off, don’t be alarmed, this is not Gayla typing these words… this is Gayla’s partner Davin. I lurk around behind the scenes most the time assisting with the design and technical upkeep of the site.
Gayla has occasionally mentioned the weekly “Arts & Crafts” nights we instituted in our home. Those nights give us both a chance to create and play with materials, styles, and concepts. We just have fun exploring new things or adding to existing projects. For me, this has been a way to clean off rusty drawing skills. [He says, "rusty" but Davin is responsible for all of the illustrations, background patterns, and decorative elements in two of my books. - Gayla]
Recently, I’ve been drawing birds — birds that just spring from my pencil, pen, imagination without extreme regard for species or proper bird anatomy — Imaginary Birds I have dubbed them.
Each week, I’ll be posting a new drawing to You Grow Girl. To begin with, the birds will be the stars but I will occasionally draw a plant or two. I hope you’ll enjoy the diversion.