Life's hourglass has again turned and another season
of change is upon me. For the past few years I have
lived in this great city of San Francisco and I have
grown much here. I have grown in love with this city,
I have grown to love what was my patio garden, and
I have grown to love my family deeper every day. Many
milestones have been reached. Promotions came. Properties
have been acquired and sold. And, at the speed of life,
I have become a husband, and a father --and now a father
once again. I've outgrown my space and now I will be
moving back to my childhood home - a house of memories.
My garden is the concrete repository in which events
of my life are recorded and tucked away. Each stem,
each petal, and each leaf blade is a poem waiting to
be discovered. One just has to listen. My garden is
my journal - the collection of my memories that is
open and read by all. Each plant is an icon of an event:
they are the witnesses, they are the scribes, and they
are the story tellers. Some plants have been passed
on to me, and some I have only begun growing as I am
leaving a legacy to pass on to future generations.
With my patio garden expanding with so much vibrant
growth, color, and botanical diversity - I realize
perhaps that is only just a reflection of how much
I have grown. I have everything from maples to mosses,
bulbs to bromeliads, pachysandra to papyrus, cacti
| On the afternoon of July 4, 2006, the de-construction
of my patio began. A slight depression set
in as my sadness began to manifest in increasing
visible cold concrete. What was once lush and
green and full of life on my patio began to
slowly fade into a mundane and frigid facade
of cement. Over the course of the next week,
more and more bare concrete made itself visible
as Jeff, Tom, and I moved plants to the other
The process of moving a patio garden is
definitely not an easy one, so I must give
much props to my cousin JEFF and my brother
TOM for all of their help. The plants were
loaded into several large plastic storage
bins, and also into large cardboard boxes,
(courtesy of the office) - and the larger
plants we shipped bare root, wrapped in large
garbage bags. I had to remove the bamboo
from their large pots, some were ceramic
and some were plastic, and those items saved
themselves for another trip. It was quite
a fiasco to try to get my garden all packed.
Albertson's grocery carts were well utilized
to transport plants from my patio to the
cars. We were poked by the cacti and then
sliced by the bromeliad leaves. We were beaten
with bamboo canes, and then stuck to by the
sticky the sundews. Apparently the plants
did not want to move.
A Toyota and a Honda were filled to overflowing with
my botanical beauties. Papyrus was looming out of
my Accord sunroof as phormium flooded the Camry.
It was not easy. The van was loaded with all sorts
of things I never knew I had. I think the plants
just multiplied without me knowing it. It took several
trips over several days but the plants are at least
all safe and sound at the new place.
the patio hardscaping was another episode all itself.
About 40 hollow block and 2 x 4's that I used
for "shelving" took another several trips.
The Accord and the Camry were literally "low riders" due
to the weight of the blocks. I had to also empty my
water-pond barrels as well. There was an unpleasant
surprise waiting for me in one of them - the pond liner
sprang a leak, so half of the barrel was filled with
water from the past year. OH did it smell... My neighbors
here probably thought there was some rotting carcass
in the complex or something. I quickly cured the problem
by mixing the swamp water with some a little bleach
to kill the bacteria that was causing the stench, and
also spraying Febreze! The water was then drained and
the barrels dried out. Jeff was able to fit both barrels
in the van and off we went. Still - those things smelled
nasty I tell ya.
dilemma at the new place is that there is not enough
sun, so I need to cut down some trees, AND in winter
time, we get lots of wind. Honestly, I am very overwhelmed
with the seemingly infinite daunting array of projects
that need to be completed. I have to focus on the roof
and windows first, as well as other interior issues.
I think next year I can begin on the landscaping aspect
Quite simply - I have outgrew my container here in
my condo in SF and the season of expanding is at hand.
Sure it's uncomfortable during this stage of moving
- but with the lessons learned from the same situations
in the past, it has only lead to one thing - more room
to grow and expand. I have to think long term as I
anticipate further growth in my garden and my life.