Posts Tagged ‘kitchen garden’

Once Used - Now Abandoned

I looked.  And then I looked again.  Is there some kind of building in there?  Why haven’t I seen it before?

It seems to be a small shed.  Yes!  Within steps of my home is a hidden shed that lights up my imagination.


A Story of Life in a Country Place

It was built at the same time the owners designed and constructed their new home in the country.  The kids took lessons and loved horseback riding.  Dad was a teacher at one of the local colleges.  Mom learned to can things and make blackberry pie with the fruit freshly picked from that clump of wild berries down the lane.  And of course there was a garden.

There was a potting shed too – a place to store all the tools – the hoes and shovels and pruning shears.  Dad built it with his own two hands and the family called it Mom’s Potting Shed.

Mom loved the shed and the garden and all the land around the new house.  She planted roses and dahlias and even an herb garden.  She joined the Master Gardeners, and for many years Mom’s Potting Shed was a bustling happy place indeed.

The kids grew up and moved away to nurture families of their own and the little shed stood idle, and Mom and Dad finally left their Virginia home for parts unknown. 

Even so, Mom’s Potting Shed stayed happy for the longest while, but eventually stopped waiting for the family to return.   Time and weather did their work and the little shed slowly declined. Rotting boards collapsed and the door broke off from repeated storms.   The floor sank to the earth and blowing leaves composted to soft places on the ground.  Wild vines crept along the inside walls to join invasive shrubs and sapling trees.  

And now the little shed is a hidden place I found – a secret sanctuary buried in the brambles. Has it discovered new purpose?  I wonder. 

Do the birds seek shelter there from brutal winter storms?   Is other wildlife welcomed inside for protection from the cold or blazing sun?

 I like to think Mom’s Potting Shed is happy once again, hiding life in a country place. 





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Another camera-walk in town revealed a secret garden.  Well, secret to me since I have not visited there in some time.  As I walked through the gates to the Stonewall Jackson House rear entrance, I was taken by a brilliant flower show.  Whereas most things are fading about now, the cloistered Jackson House garden is still thriving in spite of our flagging summer season.

Note the Little Critter Top Left

Although visitors come to tour the home of General Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson (of Civil War fame), there is a tendency to discount the wonderful kitchen garden at the back of his house on Washington Street.  I wandered into that place where he actually enjoyed participating in the planting and cultivating.

Beauty of White

Storage Shed -Jackson House Garden

Jackson’s historic garden space is small, but contains a generous variety of heritage fruits, vegetables and rose bushes, all delightful to the eye, each in its own season, and all manned by dedicated volunteers.  I think it is a lovely prelude to entering the house, itself, where he lived prior to the Civil War with his second wife, Mary Anna Morrison.  It is told that he was accidentally shot by his own men in friendly fire and died in the war at the age of 39.

Stonewall Jackson house located at 8 East Wash...

Stonewall Jackson house located at 8 East Washington Street in Lexington, Virginia (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: Confederate Lt. Gen. Thomas "Sto...

English: Confederate Lt. Gen. Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson photographed at Winchester, Virginia 1862. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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