“A gardener is the spirit of the garden, the organizing force, the heart and soul of it all.” – Jeff Cox

Just as a painter can envision the painting on the blank canvas, Herschel could envision a garden in a plain backyard. My personal gardener knew what flowers would grow well in the soil and light available. Colors were vital to the gardener – and not just the colors of the flowers. Herschel looked for variety in the colors and textures of the leaves. Some of the plants had deep green leaves; other leaves were light yellow or green, or sometimes white. The gardener would search out trees with deep red bark so that the branches would show up vibrantly against the winter snow.

Herschel taught me to appreciate the trees and plants as they appeared in each season. Even the bare tree trunks and branches, he showed me, had beauty and originality.

The gardener is the heart and soul of the garden. Where the garden is situated must be the perfect spot. Each plant is placed lovingly and carefully in order to bring out its beauty.

Now the gardener’s spirit is in the Garden. The perfect place.

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Herschel found a Cedar of Lebanon growing near Cleveland, Ohio (August 2008).