Category Archives: Talisman Gardens

Taking it in … Soaking it in…

Weekends have been pleasant of late. I have been able to get in a few rides and a few long walk/runs. While driving back from a ride in the Gorge last weekend, I had an ah-ha about why my rides and walks and runs are so important to me. Thom drove me and Patty to our drop off point at Cascade Locks so that we could pick up the bike trail there and bike to the Falls… not a long ride at all, but it has its small challenging climbs and some of the most amazing views of the Columbia Gorge.

Here’s the thing. The drive out to the locks is along the Columbia Gorge River Continue reading

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A Path Lined with Other Gardens

You can lose your soul in the eye of this Water Iris.

Three gardens inspired by my mother guided me to Talisman Gardens. Many other gardens that I have toured on my travels also weave themselves into my imagination. And then there is the garden at Maine’s home (my grandmother) in Guran.


The first garden was more of an orchard in Emsworth, England. We lived right next to the old stone wall next to our first school, where my kindergarten teacher was thoroughly disappointed in me for confusing a “J” with a “5”. What I remember from this garden is “GREEN”… and the endless nettle plants. We had a goat whose job it was to clean out the nettles, but not before those nasty plants had stung the backs of my legs. Nasty! Under the fruit trees (I can’t remember if they were apple trees or something else) the grasses grew and in the early spring the green carpet was generously dotted with lily of the valley, a sight that was ever so delicate.

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The Frog Blog

When we put the pond in last summer, one of the most vibrant memories of my childhood was rekindled. As I have mentioned before, Mummy had ponds or fountains in each house we had in Carmel Valley. And with each pond came the frog eggs (slimy ick!), tadpoles (oh so cute!) and frogs (heavenly glorious). A perfect night for me was going out and sitting on the brick stoop when it was pitch dark, looking up into a sky painted by a VanGogh brush of the Milky Way and listening to what seemed like hundreds of frogs singing their songs. It is one of those core memories that I love to revisit.

I was watering one of my begonias last summer and was startled by a florescent green frog. He was nestled between some leaves, seemingly quite at home. I am not sure if he hitched a ride from the nursery or if he had hopped over from another garden. Needless to say I put the welcome mat out! (Pending a photo)

What I did not realize until a few weeks ago is that he brought all his cousins, friends and acquaintances with him! I was in the living room on evening and realized that I was in a calm and relaxed mood. The sounds outside the window had become a symphony that recalled my childhood stoop. The stars are behind all the clouds but the frogs have filled the nights now with their symphony. Take a listen below!

Thom recorded the frogs the other night. Certainly one of the most special sounds I know of.

Even the dogs and the cat like to sit outside with me, listening to the music.

What about you? VOTE HERE!

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