Today we celebrate a German botanist, an American botanist, an explorer, and an English poet and novelist.
We hear an excerpt about the change in seasons.
We Grow That Garden Library™ with a book that challenges us to see trees in a new way - with profound understanding, respect, and intelligence.
And then we’ll wrap things up with the birthday of a beloved American poet and his humorous poem about gardening.
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September 20, 1552
Lorenz Scholz von Rosenau, German botanist, polyglot, and physician. He translated Greek and Arabic medical references along with other European texts and created a master medical reference. The book helped educate people about the plaque and earned Lorenz a coat of arms and title. In an age when people were afraid of nightshade plants, Lorenz grew potatoes. His large seven-acre garden was divided into four main quadrants connected by paths. In the middle of the garden, a large dining hall and art gallery entertained guests.
September 20, 1872
Birth of Mary Sophie Young, American botanist, and explorer. Born in Glendale, Ohio, she had seven older brothers who she credited for her toughness. After getting her Ph.D., she was put in charge of the Austin herbarium for Texas. She concealed her gender by signing correspondence "M.S. Young." During her career, she fell in love with botanizing in West Texas, and her work helped create a flora of Texas. On a 1914 trip, she wrote in her journal:
It’s about five o’clock now. The ‘lonely’ time is beginning. The air is very transparent and very still, and everything glistens. There is something of that uncanny feeling of the consciousness of inanimate things.
September 20, 1902
Birth of Florence Margaret Smith (pen name Stevie Smith), English poet and novelist. She was awarded the Cholmondeley Award for Poets and won the Queen's Gold Medal for poetry. A play Stevie by Hugh Whitemore, based on her life, was adapted into a film starring Glenda Jackson.
Nothing is more wistful than the scent of lilac, nor more robust than its woody stalk, for we must remember that it is a tree as well as a flower; we must try not to forget this.
July let me go with the sea
She stood there handing me over to the future
I seemed farther than ever before
July she watched me die under the arms of August
September lived in harmony
She took me by the hand
And gave me one more chance
October and a century of life.”
― Patricia Rezai, Submerged in a Garden of Lust
Grow That Garden Library
This book came out in 2019, and the subtitle is My Life's Journey from Ancient Celtic Wisdom to a Healing Vision of the Forest.
A Canadian botanist, biochemist, and visionary, Diana won the 2019 Sigurd F. Olson Nature Writing Award for this book, which shares her family’s Celtic ancestry along with a deeper perspective on trees and their communities - what we call forests.
Diana shares why trees matter, the role they play in solving our climate change crisis, and a path toward a greater appreciation for these quiet giants of our planet.
This book is 304 pages of a tree celebration and cautionary plea to recognize and safeguard their value to us all.
Today’s Botanic Spark
Reviving the little botanic spark in your heart
September 20, 1881
Birth of Edgar Albert Guest, British-American writer, columnist, and poet. Thanks to his happy, hopeful poetry, he was beloved and became known as the “People’s Poet” during the first half of the 20th century. Here’s an excerpt from his poem called To Plant a Garden:
If your purse no longer bulges
and you’ve lost your golden treasure,
If at times you think you’re lonely
and have hungry grown for pleasure,
Don’t sit by your hearth and grumble,
don’t let mind and spirit harden.
If it’s thrills of joy you wish for
get to work and plant a garden!
If it’s drama that you sigh for,
plant a garden and you’ll get it
You will know the thrill of battle
fighting foes that will beset it
If you long for entertainment and
for pageantry most glowing,
Plant a garden and this summer spend
your time with green things growing.
If it’s comradeship you sight for,
learn the fellowship of daisies.
You will come to know your neighbor
by the blossoms that he raises;
If you’d get away from boredom
and find new delights to look for,
Learn the joy of budding pansies
which you’ve kept a special nook for.
If you ever think of dying
and you fear to wake tomorrow
Plant a garden! It will cure you
of your melancholy sorrow
Once you’ve learned to know peonies,
petunias, and roses,
You will find every morning
some new happiness discloses.
Thanks for listening to The Daily Gardener.
"For a happy, healthy life, garden every day."
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