Wednesday, August 15, 2012

To be or not to be a Master Gardener? That is the question.




I don't mean to rush things, but I have started to think about the coming shift in the seasons. There is still plenty of summer left in the warm afternoons, but fall has already laid claim to the evening hours. In the middle of the night, I awoke shivering and reached out for a blanket for the first time in weeks.

Perhaps because of all those early years in school classrooms, September seems like a time for fresh starts and new beginnings. I have begun to think about college classes and the directions in which I want to move my life.

Should I take a class in small business accounting? It is bound to be terribly dull, but has practical purposes. I have no idea how to balance the books or manage the money my jewellery making and photography has begun to bring in.

Maybe I should take a class in photography? That certainly sounds like way more fun. I do fine enough with my camera, but imagine what I could do if I really had a clue.

And how is gardening going to fit into my future? Though a life-long passion, gardening has always taken the form of a hobby, not a vocation. But as the years have slipped by, I have begun to feel a bit restless. Is blogging about gardening enough?

In the late spring, I investigated becoming a master gardener and I now must decide soon if I want to proceed. The challenge of mastering something I love to do seems very appealing to me. And even after years of practical experience, but there still are gaps in my knowledge.

The only thing that gives me pause is the direction. If you look at what I like to write about most in this blog, it is garden design that seems to capture my imagination. Maybe it is actually landscape design I should study?

Do you ever feel this conflicted about the direction your life should take? Tell me I am not alone!

Anyway... it is Garden Bloggers Bloom Day, the last such celebration of the summer and we should take a look at what is blooming in the garden.



The recent rains have really refreshed the garden.


My roses have begun to re-bloom. This one is an Austin rose: L.D. Braithwaite.


The phlox along the white picket fence have been blooming now for a number of weeks. They are just starting to fade a bit and will need to be pruned back to coax a second round of flowers before fall frosts arrive.


Garden Phlox, Phlox paniculata 'Laura': Has purple flowers with a cream colored eye that have a very subtle fragrance. Height: 90-107 cm, Spread 60-75 cm, Care: Full sun and average soil.

Garden Phlox, Phlox paniculata 'Eva Cullum': Has clear pink flowers with a maroon colored eye This phlox also has a very subtle fragrance. Height: 60-80 cm, Spread 60-75 cm Care: Full sun and average soil. My only issue with Eva Cullum is that the leaves are susceptible to brown spots. Both these phlox wilt if not watered during times of drought.






Ballon Flower, Platycodon grandiflorus: This star-shaped flower is one of my last perennials to emerge in spring. The young shoots look almost asparagus-like and the plant's carrot-like roots mean it is difficult to move. If you like this tall, late bloomer, there is also a white and pink colored single, as well as double varieties.  Height: 45-60 cm, Spread 30-45 cm, Care: Will grow in normal, sandy and clay soils. Best in full sun, but can take light shade.

Daylily, 'Evening Gown'


Brown-Eyed-Susan, Rudbeckia fulgida 'Goldstum': I actually have a couple different varieties of Rudbeckia and find one as good as the other. They like morning sun and a bit of afternoon shade best. Height: 60-75 cm, Spread 45-60 cm, Care: Will grow in normal, sandy and clay soils.



Dwarf Calamint, Calamintha nepeta ssp. nepeta is a close cousin to garden mint, but without the spreading habit. The plant forms a neat mound of mint-scented leaves and has been covered in pale blue flowers for several weeks now. Height: 20-30 cm, Spread: 30-45 cm, Care: This is a flexible plant that will tolerate average, dry to moist conditions and will grow in normal, sandy and clay soil.


Calamint, Calamintha grandiflora variegata: I love this plant for the foliage, which is a beautiful variegated mix of cream and soft green. If trimmed, the plant will bloom with tiny mauve flowers for an extended time. Height: 30-45 cm, Spread: 45-60 cm, Care: This is a calamint will tolerate average to moist conditions and will grow in normal, sandy and even clay soil.





Agastache 'Blue Fortune': After admiring this perennial on several blogs last summer, I finally added 'Blue Fortune' just recently. The bees go mad for it!  The leaves have a slight licorice scent and the flowers and leaves are supposedly edible. Height: 60-75 cm, Spread 45-60 cm, Care: Will grow in normal, sandy and clay soils.


Dwarf Perennial Sunflower, Helianthus 'Happy Days'
This plant is relatively new to the garden and is still very much on probation. Helianthus 'Happy Days' forms an upright mound of pointy dark green leaves and has daisy-like, yellow flowers on strong stems. Height 55-60 cm, Spread 45-60 cm, Care: Average to moist, well-drained soil. My plant is doing well in half-shade, but I imagine it would do fine in full sun.


Sadly, I have discovered that Porcelain Vine is a favourite with Japanese Beetles. 


Annual: Lavatera

Sedum 'Purple Emperor': Height: 40 cm, Spread: 30-40 cm, Care: Full sun for good foliage color. 


Happy GBBD everyone!

I am going to link this post to May Dreams Gardens GBBD and Fertilizer Friday at Tootsie Time
To see some other beautiful gardens, please click the link.

80 comments:

  1. I always find myself making notes when I read your blog; there are always plants I want to check out to possibly include in our garden. I didn't know that phlox will flower again if you prune them. I will get the secateurs out! Your garden is really looking lovely.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Jennifer, why not both? The Master Gardener association is as enjoyable as the folks in the particular group you join. Go to a meeting first to see what they are up to. Many groups more active than others. The time commitment isn't particularly difficult. The course work is (was - they've probably changed it) a bit dull until you get into the plant component. I took a design course at Sheridan - had been doing designs for folks before the course, but it gave me the discipline and tools I needed for a more professional presentation - also met lots of very nice like-minded people. Ix-nay on the umbers-nay..... That's what accountants are for.

    Your garden is looking lovely - no fears about those beetles on the porcelain vine - within a week, you should have a whack of fresh new leaves. Blue Fortune seeds about happily - if you like that one, shake some seeds heads around the garden and you'll have bits of blue/purple wands all about.
    Barbara

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Barbara, Thanks for your input on being a Master Gardener. I would love to study to be both a Master Gardener and a landscape designer, if money was no issue. To be a Master Gardener would cost approximately three to five thousand dollars. Landscape design would be that and more. I am not sure I can afford both. One of the two needs to step forward as a first choice.
      I will certain look into design classes at Sheridan.
      Thanks for the advice on the Porcelain vine. Those beetles have turned the leaves into swiss cheese. Good to know it will recover. The bees and I look forward to more Blue Fortune next year.

      Delete
  3. Hi Jennifer! When I lived in Vancouver I was so enamoured of gardening that I was about to sign up for the Master Gardener program but then my ex accepted a transfer and off we went. That inspiration disappeared as I was engulfed with moving and new jobs and new training and, and, and. Excuses!!! Don't let excuses interfere with your passion - go for it! If I lived closer, I'd take it up with you and we could spur each other on.

    Enjoy!

    xox

    and yes, I'm conflicted MOST of the time! lol

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Anne for the words of encouragement. I wish you did live closer, maybe then some of that DIY talent would rub off on me!

      Delete
  4. Piękny ogród, a kwiaty przy ogrodzeniu wyglądają cudownie. Pozdrawiam.
    Beautiful garden and flowers at the fence looks wonderful. Yours.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I can recommend you to do a Master Gardening course or whatsoever. Years ago I did courses in garden design and garden history. Just for fun because I had a job in the shipping branche. When we bought our present house and garden I stopped my job to go gardening full time. Soon I got enquiries for designing small and very large gardens and I still do a lot of designing and make planting plans for people.
    Your garden looks still beautiful and daylily "Evening Gown" is a lovely one.
    Succes and enjoy yourself in your garden with your dogs!
    Janneke

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Janneke for sharing your experience. It is nice to know that making a big change can work out in the long run.

      Delete
  6. I certainly can't say which course of study to pursue, but I can relate to the idea of figuring out a direction or two in which to head next in life! Your photography, as always, is amazing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Karen, It is reassuring to know that I am not the only one conflicted about the directions one's life can take.

      Delete
  7. I love your succulents in the bird bath....beautiful pictures...take an art class!....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Sharon, I have a fine arts degree, but you never know, there is always something to be learned.

      Delete
  8. What an amazingly beautiful garden you have with such an array of different flowers. It is truly a dream. You are a super gardener.... and photographer!
    Bye,
    Marian

    ReplyDelete
  9. Jennifer, your blooming garden is so beautiful, I love Sedum 'Purple Emperor', mine is starting to bloom too.
    Choose your path in life as your heart says and not the mind, so you'll not regret the choice.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nadezda, There is a lot of wisdom in this simple advice.

      Delete
    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
  10. Hello Jennifer, I am 54 and still thinking what's more to learn. Follow your heart and just go for what you like the most yourself. Lovely flowers in your garden. I like it very much.
    Best wishes
    Marijke

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Marijke, We are about the same age. I must say that I have always put my heart on hold and let my practical head rule the day. As I have gotten older however, the whisperings of my heart get more urgent.

      Delete
  11. Such a wonderful garden and pictures! Do as your heart tells you to do. I can comfort you that i still haven't found my dream, what to do. I'm a Swedish teacher just because I couldn't find out anything else...i'd like to do something more creative...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am sure that teaching is very rewarding. Like you Sadun blogi, I have always been very practical in my career path. I have made a good living as an artist, but within a corporate environment. In the future, I would like to find a way to work for myself, and like you, I want that work to be creative.

      Delete
  12. Hi Jennifer
    Let me just say first that your photos prove you should TEACH a photography class, not take one :) As usual, your pictures are incredible.
    For awhile I took Landscape Design courses through University of Guelph. They were totally online and I never had to attend a "real" class. They were fun, I learned a lot but then lost interest right before getting the diploma. Not my fault - I'm a Gemini and Gemini's never complete projects! :)
    Re: Master Gardeners. I have 2 friends both of whom are MG's. One just loves the group, the activities, the work that's associated with being a MG - the annual plant sale, the volunteering, etc. The other one lost interest after listening to arguing and powers struggles within the group. Sheesh! It's supposed to be fun - who needs that?? Lastly I just want to alert you that Landscape Ontario runs excellent design courses. The few I took really taught me a lot. Have fun, whichever ones you choose.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Astrid for your kind words about my photography. I have a good eye, but not the camera knowledge and skills that I would like to have. One of the MG programs is through the University of Guelph (the more expensive of the two options). Thanks for relating the experience of your friends. I hate to think I might invest several thousand dollars in schooling only to find I am embroiled in group power struggles and squabbles. I will definitely explore the classes through Landscape Ontario.

      Delete
  13. I adore seeing your lush northern garden! So different from our parched August gardens. I'm just finishing up my intern year for the MG program. I've enjoyed the process and have met so many wonderful people. Looking back on the experience, I'm glad I've done it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Cat for this positive point of view on becoming a Master Gardener.

      Delete
  14. I'm so glad you asked this question! I've been going back and forth about becoming a MG myself. In fact, I've just about talked myself out of it. I think I would enjoy the interaction, but I have so many projects to do in my own garden, I worry about finding the time to do all that's required. As for you, I think you should go into landscape design rather than the MG program. I think it would be a better use of your time, if you think garden design is something you would like to work toward. Good luck with your decision.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for the advice Holley. I have been mulling over the question of becoming a MG for a few months now. I think that you may be right and landscape design is the way to go.

      Delete
  15. Jennifer, I am sure that what ever you decide to do, you will do it well. You appear to be a creative person. I would go in that direction.

    ReplyDelete
  16. I'm sorry to hear that there is a fee incurred with becoming a master gardener. I think the classes here are free as long as you make a one year commitment to volunteer.

    I'm often conflicted about what to do with my life. I feel like I've been taking classes forever. You definitely are not alone in that respect.

    The round arbor is gorgeous!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Girl Sprout, To become a MG here in Canada, you must go through an interview process, pass a test to prove that you have good fundamental knowledge of gardening practices and complete a number of college classes. To be a practicing MG, there is also volunteer hours and a commitment to participate in the activities of your MG group. It is no small undertaking!

      Delete
  17. Jennifer, I took the Master Gardener class in Virginia back in '98 and when we moved here to SC I took the class here in '10. I learned a lot in the SC that was different than what we did in VA. Look into what the MG group does, if the projects or activities aren't everything you want, go a different route. I am surprised your course is so expensive. The Va one was $100 and SC was $300...a number of years later. I was taken back that it was so much, but compared to your cost it was a bargain.
    As for taking photography classes, I would like to do that.....from the looks of your photos I would think you have taken a couple photo classes!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Janet. I have actually never taken any classes in photography. I have reached a certain level on my own, but I think formal classes might push me further. The MG program seems very different here in Canada and way more expensive! If it was a matter of a few hundred dollars, I wouldn't hesitate.

      Delete
  18. Jennifer, I'm sure I am older than you, but I am still trying to figure out what direction I want to take for the rest of my life! I've circled all kinds of classes offered this fall from jewelry-making to guitar, but I know I can't take everything, so I have to decide. Am I too old to learn to play the guitar? Could I really make something in a woodworking class even though I can't wield a hammer? I think the great thing is just wanting to learn new things--when we stop learning, old age sets in, I believe.

    Anyway, I'm sure you would enjoy photography, but your photos are already so beautiful, I don't think you need to learn a whole lot. I would heartily recommend the Master Gardener course, though. I went through the program two years ago and learned so much, not to mention making lots of new friends. The volunteering required to keep up your active status has also been a terrific learning experience.

    Your phlox are gorgeous! And I really like the calamint--this is a plant I don't have, and I like the contrast it provides with so many other big bloomers.

    ReplyDelete
  19. I just read Janet's comment and then went back to see what you had written about the cost--oh my, I can't believe the MG program is so expensive! I think our course was $120 which included a comprehensive manual that I still refer to often. If the program is that expensive, I'd opt for a college course instead; that way you could focus on landscape design, for example.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Rose for sharing your experience of becoming a MG. As far as I am concerned, you are never to old to learn to play the guitar! I agree with you that learning new things keeps you young. I never want to stop learning new things. The MG program here is very expensive. Hence my hesitation! If the course was $120, I'd sign up in a heartbeat! I am now thinking that college for landscape design is the way to go.

      Delete
  20. Go for it, then you can never say 'If only', but only you can decide which one. None of us are ever too old to learn. Rose asks 'could she learn to carve something at a woodcarving class' of course she could. When I was teaching woodcarving some of my students were in their 80s! Your garden is absolutely stunning, loved the photo of the Rudbekias with your picket fence, that certainly is a WOW!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Pauline, I hope that I am still learning in my eighties!

      Delete
  21. I highly recommend the MG course. I too am shocked at the price! Like Rose above it only cost me $120 and we got a manual and amazing instructors. I have taken photography classes at the local technical college and they are a class by class offering. Perhaps you could find a local photography organization that you could join. Often they have speakers and of course you could learn a lot from the members. Love all your blooms. You have a gift for landscape design...your color combinations are stunning! I just added catmint to my garden this year and expecting great things. Sorry about the Japanese Beetle invasion. My plants usually bounce back from their damage in the fall.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for your recommendation and advice Karin. I have learned a lot from gardening friends and bloggers, so I imagine there would be lots to learn from other photographers as well.

      Delete
  22. Beautiful photos as always. I just adore the phlox and rudbeckia combination along your picket fence.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Marisa! It is a bit of an odd color scheme (mauve, pink and yellow), but the white of the picket fence helps. You can't beat rudbeckia at this time of year for long lasting blooms.

      Delete
  23. You have a beautiful garden. I love your phlox...have been looking for some to fill in gaps in the August garden, they have been hard to find this season. I can tell you becoming a Master Gardener is fun but a lot of latin to learn. I am on a leave of absence and over 10 years committed to the Master Gardeners of Ontario. Good luck with whatever course you take this fall. Jen

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is good to hear that being a MG has been such a rewarding experience for you Jen.

      Delete
  24. Jen, I think you would not get that much out of the MG classes (ours cost $60), as ours centered around insect control, learning pesticides and such.

    I and another seasoned MGer had an office in the Falls for many years where people would come or call with problems. I really enjoyed the social interaction and being helpful for a few hours, a couple times a week, but the questions they ask may not be what interests you. Mostly, it was problems with growing grass, insects eating plants, fungus, etc. Often it was weed and insect ID, then how to get rid of them. We also had community planting projects which did not interest me. Too much physical work on very hot days.

    As for being a designer, my training was six years(undergrad and grad). I went for architecture, but the landscape program was also six years. It will take much time and you will be required to present a portfolio of your work to be accepted, unless you just take courses at a junior college or something like that, but you will only get a very limited idea what goes into the process of design. You will be doing design on computer (likely CAD) and that is very challenging to learn.

    As for photography, I had two semesters in college and found I learned more on my own. I have learned more joining my photography club, where there are mostly professional photographers as members. I am doing studio work now and experiencing things and places I would not have been exposed on my own. Plus the quality of their work pushes you to become better. I was intimidated at first, but now, my work is improving. I have been photographing for 23 years and not until I joined a couple of photography organizations did I improve as much. I am a member of NAPP (National Association of Photoshop Professionals. This lead to joining Kelby Training for the photography end. It is taught by the most famous photographers in their specialized genre of photography. I can not tell you what help and fun that has been. It was cheap to as a NAPP member to join, but I think the fee is very reasonable if you are not a member.

    Since I have experience in three of your choices, feel free to email me or even call me. I have time and experience that may be helpful, which could also narrow down your choice or make a decision easier.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Donna,

      Thanks so much for taking the time to leave such lengthy and thoughtful comment. I really appreciate your perspective as someone who has experience in some of my choices. Your experiences as a MG are very illuminating. I don't have great interest in insect IDs, tips on growing grass etc. You are right, I wouldn't find it interesting.

      In recent years, I have learned a number of computer programs, so CAD doesn't scare me, although I bet it will be very challenging. As for landscape design, I need to find something quicker than 6 years. It is simply a matter to being too old ( I am in my 50's).

      It is very interesting to read that you learned more from other photographers than from college classes. What I need is a better understanding of the workings of a camera. After that, it is all about gaining experience, isn't it ? I can see that this is where you can learn a lot from other photographers.

      Delete
  25. I've started to ask myself the same questions. I will continue teaching until I retire and have a very long ways to go! However, next fall (2013) I'm going to start my Master Gardener classes. I'm hoping it will help me meet other gardeners since I only a have a very few friends who garden.

    What I want to do with my gardening skills is help other people turn their sterile yards into wildlife gardens. If the only people I ever help are friends/neighbors, that's fine with me. I don't want to do the work for them but teach them how to do it themselves and act as a consultant/coach. I would definitely take the boring accounting class since it has the practical application you need to be successful at what you love.

    $3-5,000 to be a Master Gardener???? Are they insane?! I'd invest that into your business instead. You're already such an experienced gardener, I doubt you need the class. Taking MG courses here are really cheap.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Tammy, I think your plan to work as a garden consultant/coach sounds like a wonderful one. Even working with just friends and neighbours would be very rewarding. Who knows, it may even spread out from there.
      It is very expensive to be a MG here and that is part of my hesitation. I am always up for learning new things, but the cost involved are a significant factor for me. It is a substantial investment.
      I think you are right about the accounting: boring, but a necessary evil. Not knowing who to manage my books is holding me back from expanding.

      Delete
  26. Your garden is just gorgeous Jennifer!
    I hear you on pondering what to do in the future. I'm sort of at that same crossroads myself. You have a lot of talents ~ could go so many directions. I wish you luck deciding. I always think it's supposed to be easier ~ like you should just "know" ~ but that's never happened to me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kathleen, Sometimes I think our hearts know, but our heads keep running interference. At least this has always been the case for me.

      Delete
  27. Wonderful post Jennifer! is that top rose Abraham Derby by chance?

    Re. the MG question; I opted to take the professional equivilant for WA State called the Certified Professional Horticulturalist exam. I don't have time to put in all the required 'volunteer' hours asked of MG's but I did want to challenge myself (I studied for, took and passed the exam in 3 months) and acquire a label that clients could grasp and be reassured that I had a good knowledge base.

    I've also taken a few advanced landscape design classes 'for fun' in the winter to hone my skills and get fresh ideas but don't want to face a 3-4 year course nor do I really need it for my business.

    Just be sure that you have FUN!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Karen, My most recent job was as a graphic designer. It just wasn't a good fit and I was miserable for years. I want to like what I do for a living again.
      I need to find something that will not take years and years to do. It is good to know that there are options out there, like the one you took, that don't take years to accomplish.
      P.S. The roses in that little bouquet are mixed, but the one front and center is a Mary Rose. The Mary Rose if a bit more blue-pink than the Abraham Derby and is just as pretty.

      Delete
  28. Great post. I'm really liking both calamints.
    I feel like I always have too much to do. Working full time, trying to spend time with hubby and grown children, doing some kind of physical working out and then fitting in some sort of brain exercise, such as a class. It's tough finding the time. And it all sounds so appealing.........so good luck!

    ReplyDelete
  29. It is tough to strike a balance. You sound like you have your priorities well figured out though. Thanks for your good wishes.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Beautiful Garden of Eden, flowers are fantastic. I am greeting

    ReplyDelete
  31. I am sure you will decide which way to go eventually - I don't see how you could improve on your gardening skills though - as your garden always looks picture perfect to me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Elaine, but honestly, there is lots about gardening I still don't know. That much was evident from the test they make you write to be considered for the MG program. On the multiple choice test, there were lots of questions I did not know the answers for. For instance, there was a question about different types of grass and I had to guess. There is always room to learn new things!

      Delete
  32. I know exactly what you mean about September. This is when I Spring clean for some reason - I like to get my house in order for Winter and thoughts do stray to learning new things.
    The sunflowers that are on probation look great - if they break their curfew send them over to me and I'll gladly supervise them for you :-)
    Your garden and photography already looks amazing so (for fear of sounding like a fortune cookie) follow your heart and you'll surely succeed!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't think you sound like a fortune cookie at all. So many gardeners agree with your wise words of advice.
      The sunflowers continue to bloom their heads off. They will be on probation however, until I am convinced they will not spread and invade my main flowerbeds.

      Delete
  33. How dreamy, Jennifer! Such a wonderful array of flowers!
    I sure hope to have a garden this beautiful one day. :)
    Thank you for brightening my day.

    ReplyDelete
  34. More beautiful pictures! A stunning garden...
    Best of luck in deciding which fork in the garden path to take.
    Debbie :)

    ReplyDelete
  35. I always enjoy your photographs. I would chose to pursue the field you enjoy most. But why limit yourself to one choice, why not two. From my knowledge of master gardeners through my nursery, I am not sure I would recommend that for the reasons Donna states. However, it doesn't take six years to be a landscape designer. Are we talking about landscape architect? You can call yourself s landscape designer with no formal training, although I don't recommend that. A series of landscape design courses at a local college plus your already developed sense for plants and gardens should be more than enough.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am sure that I will end up choosing more than one thing, Carolyn. These days an artist must be versatile; practically a jack-of-all-trades. I don't have six years to devote to being a landscape architect however, so landscape designer it will have to be. I would like some formal training and think that that would be required here in Canada if you were to call yourself a landscape designer.

      Delete
  36. I love your gardens and your dogs are wonderful too.

    ReplyDelete
  37. Follow your heart Jennifer photograghy is easily intermingled with gardening, and you do both things well.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Karen! I am feeling more determined to follow my heart.

      Delete
  38. Jennifer, I could spend hours and hours nosing arund your delightful garden. The white picket fence erupting with colour is a picture of perfection all of its own.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much for your kind words. The border along the picket fence is the prettiest part of the garden at this time of year.

      Delete
  39. Once again such a beautiful journey! Fabulous!

    ReplyDelete
  40. Jennifer girl ! I am totally in love with your garden and outside of your home .. it is simply beautiful : )
    I would be so interested about the Master Gardener classes but I can't do the volunteer work that has to be done .. the body just can't put up with it.
    Although yesterday was a marathon day in my garden and I will pay for it for many days .. probably weeks .. and yet ? I will most likely be in the garden again soon because I have had to make major decisions on how to make it easier for me since my body is protesting so much.
    Hubby really wants us to put in an irrigation system and I totally agree .. it would take a lot of pressure off with watering .. these summers are going to stay the same .. very drought like .. so something has to be done to make it doable ?
    I understand your thoughts and not knowing what to "invest" your time and energy into.
    Listen to your inner voice .. and you will know what is best !
    Joy

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Joy, I am so sorry to here that you are struggling with health issues. I wish you lived closer, because I would be happy to pitch in and help.
      I do think you are right, these hot, dry summers are here to stay. An irrigation system sounds like a great idea.
      Thank you for your wise advice. I will try to listen to that inner voice.

      Delete
  41. Your garden and garden photos are beautiful, as always. And you are not alone. I have been trying to create a niche for myself for a year or two now. It's a very slow process for me. The Master Gardener program here in Michigan is more of a Volunteer program. You volunteer so many hours for local gardening causes. It is a good organization to market yourself--offering classes, workshops, etc.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is a slow process for me as well, Mary. I too have been trying out a few options for a couple of years now, and need to take some fresh steps toward moving forward with my life. Thanks for sharing what you know about your local MG programs.

      Delete
  42. Ok lady...I have been thinking about this post! I think that you have so much to teach others in regards to the garden. I have learned so much from your blog. Yeah you could focus on photography but you are so talented in that arena already! I say you can't go wrong with either program! You got the talent girl...go for it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Your kind words and encouragement are so appreciated!

      Delete
  43. Stunning photography, stunning garden. Please don't let the later become overwhelmed by porcelain vine.

    ReplyDelete
  44. Your garden has obviously enjoyed the rain it has received. You have some truly beautiful blooms. I understand your dilemma; a book keeping course if it doesn’t run for too long could be useful whatever you decide to do with your future. If it is design rather than horticulture I don’t think you need to be a master gardener, just know where to get the information you need. I’m not saying you need to know nothing but you may already know enough. A good design course would help you understand about ‘space’ and designing for clients and not yourself. I agree about the September feeling of renewal, I think you may be right about the new school year thing. Christina

    ReplyDelete
  45. So many gorgeous flowers and photos!!!

    ReplyDelete
  46. Kathleen's response is just what I was thinking.

    Certainly you have a beautiful garden and are a talented photographer!!

    ReplyDelete

I love to hear from you. Thanks for leaving a comment.