Garden Bones

The winter freezes left a skeleton garden

Covered in the corpses of Fan Palm Fronds

Pygmy Date Palm Fronds

Flowering shrubs


The Carolina Trumpet Vine

Gone from the pergola

Leaving only shadows

To stand in for shade



A baby Tree Frog

Taking refuge under cover

of the rocks

That protected the winter fountain


Where there was a view of graceful Pygmy Fronds

Sheltering the porch

Only bearded Pygmy trunks remain


a rude vista of a fence

where low-hanging Fans

once shifted in the sunlit breeze


Layer on layer of fallen fans

Littered the lawn

Waiting their turn to be hauled away

Only two rows, he said

We’ll plant underneath, something for color, he said


While I was busy looking down at what was lost

The old palms were busy looking up

At the youngsters unfolding like magic above them

Fans would shift again in the sunlit breeze

Come early summer.


16 Comments on “Garden Bones

  1. Lovely sequence. If our winter hit your garden it would like the movie Ice Age 3. 😀 We do have returning song birds & a raccoon has shown up. They all look around going did we arrive/get up too early. They are all co-signing a paper on climate change. 🙂


    • I’d bet they are a little confused. I was hoping you had some warmer weather by now. Climate change paper, indeed. Somebody needs to look into that seriously! Thanks, Joseph. I’m glad you like the photos! 🙂


  2. Love how you manage to make a bare garden look all minimalist and arty George! The denuded pergola and the palm inflorescence make great bookends! 🙂


    • Ah, thank you, Madhu. You always make me feel good about whatever I post. My world is minimalist compared to the rich and varied world that you inhabit. But, I love my hermit garden. I live here and will, I hope, die here. Losing the lush foliage was a bit difficult for me. I know that loss precedes bounty, always. So, I have come to appreciate the change. I suppose I was growing too comfortable in my little cocoon! Chuckle… Old folks require a bit of a nudge sometimes. Thank you for always coming by to visit. 🙂


  3. Such wonderful photography, George. I love the little Tree Frog crouched there. The bearded Pygmy stumps are so photogenic. Thanks for sharing your garden in progress. 🙂


  4. Oh goodness, the fans. It’s painful to realize. How naked it must all feel (bare as a little baby tree frog). I can’t get over the pergola stripped of the trumpet vine. To the bone as it all is, it makes for fascinating images. It will come back. It will all come back. Won’t it?


    • Well, the lowest two tiers of fans had to be pruned. Some of the upper ones have damage, but they’re okay. The trees were not destroyed which could have been the case. The Fans are hardy, but the Pygmy Date Palms are not cold-hardy. It’s something of a miracle that they survived. The fronds had to be removed so far up the trunks that it exposed the entire garden. Normal people would think that is preferable. However, being the hermit, I find it too exposed to suit me. I can see through the palms to the back corner of the garden and through the other side to Kelli’s house. I am getting accustomed to it. Romero will plant shade-loving plants under the palms, and that will soften the look. It all fared better than I imagined. The most startling thing is the absence of the Trumpet Vine on the pergola. He cut it back to the ground! Already, it is growing back up the trellis walls. I had forgotten how barren it looked without the vine. Yes, the garden will essentially return. The Elephant Ears survived somehow and are fine. I am reassured… Thank goodness. There was considerable wailing and gnashing of teeth around here for a spell there… Chuckle… I knew you’d like the new fans. They are amazing, really. Thanks, Lemony.


    • Thanks, Millie. The pergola was covered with a leafy vine for so many years that I forgot how bare it is without the vine. The shadows fascinate me now. Escher, that’s interesting. Thanks for the visit, Millie. I enjoyed your video. 🙂



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