Tuesday, June 06, 2006

My husband owns a new lawn care company. He does pretty well for being in business for 6 months, but the job has some added perks that I love. His customers often want plants removed from their gardens for one reason or another. Rather than pay to dump them, he brings them home, sometimes they're healthy, but usually they're ailing and pitiful - and sometimes we don't even know what they are!

We've got a pretty nice garden out there, for a bunch of misfit unwanted plants. I love my garden, and I take a lot of pride in the fact that many of the plants were all but dead when he brought them home. I've got a rose bush that has taken 2 years of constant care, and finally this year, it's full of blooms.

Anyway, yesterday, Scott brought home 8 Nandinas that a customer wanted removed. 8 healthy Nandinas. We planted 5 of them on the spot. I'd never seen or heard of a Nandina until Nova was hospitalized. They were all over the hospital grounds, and they were so pretty in their fall/winter colors (rusty/red) and I fell in love with them. They're sort of dainty - and I found out yesterday that they have very pretty flowers, and green leaves, in the spring.

This morning, Scotty and I got up and decided where to plant these three other bushes. We'd been planning a Memorial Garden in our heads for about a month. Today, we got a good start. We built a water feature from a recycled wheel barrow, and surrounded it with flat stepping stones (also removed from a customer's yard) to camouflage the edge. I planted Nandinas around it, and a couple other rescue plants (type unknown) and plotted out where I'll be planting the Cupcake miniature roses (at Alexis' funeral, we laid 12 of them on her casket before they buried her, one for each day she lived) and where the Supernova Hostas (no explanation necessary, right?) will go. We can't afford to buy them yet, but we will. Soon.

Scotty dug the hole for the pond, because he knew I'd never get it deep enough, and then pretty well left me to do the rest myself. I think he knew I needed to do this, and I don't think he minded not having to do "work" stuff at home. So I spent the day lugging stones (some seemed like they weighed as much as I do) and arranging them, and rearranging them, and rearranging them, until I was satisfied with the effect. I dug several holes for all the plants, which wouldn't have been too hard, except that we discovered that the spot we chose for this bit of gardening used to be the leach field for the septic system (we're on city water/sewer now, so it doesn't matter) which means that it's 90% gravel. That makes for some hard digging. My hands and back are killing me and I'm walking like an 80 year old.

I enjoyed getting in there and doing it, getting dirty and planting and accomplishing something. It looks pretty good even missing the roses and hostas. It felt good to make a place to symbolize and memorialize the babies, even if it isn't finished. Nothing soothes me like gardening, it's just satisfying, no matter what I'm planting, or why. It was a fitting way to spend the 2-month anniversary of Nova's death.

posted by Erin @ 11:18 PM   0 comments

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Donovan "Nova" LeClair

Monroe, North Carolina
Nova was our second child to be born with congenital heart defects. We lost our daughter at 12 days after open heart surgery in 2001. Nova was born 12/2/05, with Pulmonary Atresia with VSD. He lived 6 weeks after surgery, and passed away on April 6th, 2006. This blog is his story, and the on-going story of how our family is dealing with the loss of our beautiful boy.
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