In Praise of Clover

Why a post on clover?  For a couple of reasons.  The clover in the photo above, taken this morning on the Somenos Dike Trail, reminds me of happy times.  When I was a child we used to pull the pink stems out of the flower head and suck out the sweet nectar. We used to search for 4-leaf-clover although I don’t remember if we ever found one. There was much wild clover in those days.  Years later when I babysat my granddaughter when she was a toddler, I taught her how to do that on a patch of the same kind of clover that we found near her home. I wonder if she remembers. Sadly that patch was mowed down and replaced with grass by the people who owned the land where the townhouse complex she lived in was located.  This seems to be the way now, there are not many places where wild things are left to themselves. I am very thankful that all wildflowers (or weeds if you prefer) on either side of the Somenos Dike Trail are left to themselves and they are a joy to behold.

My second reason to like clover is different.  We have white Dutch clover in our lawns, front and back.  The neighbour on the left side of us is not happy about this.  In fact, she told my husband quite a story of how her old neighbours had clover in their lawn and it blew to her lawn.  And by the way, (she asked) what was the white flower in our lawn? I am sure she knew that it is clover.  So this sent me on an online search about clover.  Is it a weed?  Is it beneficial to a lawn?  It turns out that both are correct, it is a weed but it is also beneficial.  I’m afraid our neighbour will not be pleased, but we are not getting rid of the clover.  Below is a great article on why clover is beneficial.:

http://www.hgtv.com/design/outdoor-design/landscaping-and-hardscaping/beneficial-clover-in-lawns

In quite another way a three-leaf-clover is a great way to teach children about the Trinity:  Father, Son and Holy Spirit..   as the clover leaf has three parts on one stem, so the Trinity is one.

1 John 5:7: For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.

vcg

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My Mother’s Grape Ivy

In November of 2012 my mother passed away and I became caretaker of her Grape Ivy plant.  The funny thing is though, that my mother was never a gardener.  I remember that when I was a child, my mother used to sit on the front lawn and try to find four-leaf-clovers but my father was the one who loved to plant and care for gardens.

My mother had a lot of house plants though, drought tolerant house plants.  🙂  The Grape Ivy above is at least 25 years old if not older.  She also had a wax plant which had such a strong fragrance when it bloomed, she used to cut off the flower buds.  Also a Christmas cactus.  The wax plant and cactus were very old, I remember the wax plant as a child.  It hung on an iron tripod built by my uncle.  Now both of these plants reside with my son and his family.

When I brought the grape ivy home in April of 2013 it was looking pretty sad, my brother said he had “thrown water on it a couple of times” between the time of my mother’s death and the following April.  When I brought it home I repotted it and trimmed it way back.  It sat on the top of a china cabinet from then until yesterday when I moved it to the top of an antique sideboard.

I hope that this plant will live a long time to come.  Perhaps when I am gone from this earth, it will move to my son’s to join the others.

vcg

Blooming Broom and Memories

The wild broom is blooming now. It is considered a weed by municipalities and they do their best to get rid of it but for me it brings back a memory of a very sad time which our Lord in his mercy and timing changed to joy.  The photo above was taken yesterday near the Cowichan Estuary while the photos below are of memories.

When I was a child there was a bush down the street we called the “little bush” where there were many broom plants.  We used to make crowns of the branches. In June of 2010, after babysitting my granddaughter for 2 or 3 days a week since 2005, her parents made the decision to move to Vancouver Island.  I was devastated at this upcoming loss of seeing them so often.  At the same time, our little malti-poo Jamie had developed epilepsy a few months before.

In early July of 2010 we took my granddaughter and Jamie to a place called Garry Point in Steveston BC for one last day trip.  There was a large stand of broom there, and I remembered how I used to make crowns of it so we stopped and made one for my granddaughter.  Below is a photo of me reaching for the broom.  My granddaughter is behind me.

Below is a photo of my granddaughter wearing the crown and of Jamie below her.  I am wearing a bag for Jamie in case he got too tired to walk.

Less than a month later, Jamie had died from the ravages of epilepsy, and my granddaughter had moved with her mom and dad to Vancouver Island.  My heart was broken.  I sold my car because I could no longer stand to drive it with the memories of her riding in the back in her car seat.

But God in his mercy moved us to Vancouver Island a year later.  He provided a buyer for our home a week after it was listed.  He provided a friend of my husband who had a big toy hauler to move us thus saving us the cost of expensive movers.  Our new home was in the country, a place I always wanted to live.  It was not large by modern standards, but it had everything we had always wished for.  It was/is located 1/2 hour from my granddaughter and her mom and dad.

My granddaughter is 13 now, a young lady becoming independent.  I don’t see her nearly as often as I used to but that’s OK.   I am grateful that the Lord, in his mercy, healed my broken heart.  I am thankful and realize that everything happened according to His plan for all of us.

vcg