The Dry Garden: Letting go

Posted on | November 12, 2010 | 2 Comments

There may be something more painful than letting go of a garden built from scratch and largely by hand, but I haven’t experienced it. Yet after 12 years in the only home I have known in Los Angeles, it’s time to move. The young oaks, toyon, ceanothuses, sages and fruit trees will need to ingratiate themselves to the new owners, or die. Signs painted by local schoolchildren will stay. My father’s ashes along with the graves of three beloved dogs cannot come with me. They are all bound up in the plants.

Yet handing over the garden isn’t difficult because of sacred dust. It’s the living that haunt me. It’s unexpectedly intense affection for the defiantly stray cat that I have taken to feeding. It’s hoping that the mourning doves that I have fed and supplied with fresh water every day since July 1998 find new food and new water. (How I regret ever having enticed them.) It’s because there’s never a good moment to leave a garden. A garden is never finished.

Click here to keep reading The Dry Garden in the Los Angeles Times.


2 Responses to “The Dry Garden: Letting go”

  1. Ben Armentrout-Wiswall
    November 14th, 2010 @ 10:16 pm

    Emily, it must be a wrenching experience!
    Like saying goodbye to a very dear friend before moving to another continent.
    Do you know the new owners? Are they likely to care for your garden as it is? If not, don’t look back! But always remember, garden is a verb.

  2. OtPR
    November 14th, 2010 @ 11:48 pm

    I am so sorry. My heart would split in two if I couldn’t have my garden.

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