First rose of summer

First rose of summer 2 On the way to work this Solstice morning, I claimed this blossom as my first rose of summer.  This pink beauty is blooming in a back alley amidst "thorns" of debris, dirt, and the noise and rush of  traffic (garbage trucks, taxis, commuters late for work). Perhaps we need and appreciate it more in this setting than a carefully tended garden so its sweet scent and lovely face can delight the senses and calm the busy, fretful mind.

Now here's a true solstice garden for you to enjoy: Summer Solstice – from the heart, from the earth. It's worth clicking on the link to visit this award-winning garden. Here's an excerpt from the page's text. I'm going to quote some of these words when asked why I garden:

I conceived this garden as a living illustration of our philosophy that farming, and growing plants, leads to a richer, more fulfilling life. Cultivation of the soil puts us in touch with nature, and through nature, I think we achieve a sense of spiritual connection, too. A gardener who grows what he eats has a feeling of belonging, which is precious and irreplaceable. Being in harmony with the seasons, and respecting the soil itself, brings meaning to our alienating modern world. I hope our garden will inspire people – and especially children – to discover the feel of pushing a seed into the soil; the excitement of that first tiny green shoot; the wonderful taste of something just picked from the earth. It’s our chance to re-establish our connection with the rhythms of nature; to grow, and give thanks for, our daily bread.
Summer Solstice marks the first day of summer. It is also the longest day of the year. It is the time of year when the soil and nature work in harmony to produce an abundance of crops, fruit, vegetables, herbs and flowers. - Carole Bamford, founder Daylesford Organic