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ConnieAnnKirk
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Enter "the Garden" (Our Off-topic Chat)

[ Edited ]
"The Garden" is our thread for conversations not directly related to discussion of the novel itself.  Come into the "garden" and enjoy the "view" and the company of other book club members. 
 
~ConnieK


Message Edited by ConnieK on 06-24-2008 02:32 PM
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Re: Enter "the Garden" (Our Off-topic Chat)

[ Edited ]
Some of you mentioned that you enjoy gardening.  How does your garden grow?  :smileywink:  I would love to grow a garden, but alas, I seem to be cursed with a lack of ability.  I can't seem to even keep a house plant alive.....I did manage to keep a nice batch of miniature roses going in planters one year, but then I don't know what happened to them after that.  And, for some lucky reason, I am able to attract hummingbirds each year to a feeder.  I enjoy their visits so much!  I do so much enjoy other people's gardens.  Some of them are really spectacular.  Interestingly, some of the best gardens I've seen just looking by driving by are often in the lawns of the smallest and humblest of homes.
 
~ConnieK


Message Edited by ConnieK on 07-01-2008 11:44 AM
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Everyman
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Re: Enter "the Garden" (Our Off-topic Chat)

ConnieK wrote:Some of you mentioned that you enjoy gardening.  How does your garden grow? 

I don't garden -- I quarry. We have about half an inch of soil over rock rock here. It's either a matter of pick-axing out a hole to plant something in -- necessary for trees or shrubs -- or building raised beds, as I have for my wife's roses and a few vegetables. Of course, we also have to be mindful of the deer -- our garden is fully enclosed in 7' high deer fencing, and whatever is planted outside that area must be a native, deer-proof plant. It's worth it, since I love the deer, but it makes for a very limited garden area, having to build up raised beds and build a high fence around them.

And on top of that, of course, there's the constant sea wind which dries the plants out and brings in cool salt air that few like. And we're on a limited well, so very little water for watering.

All in all, if you love to garden, don't move here!
_______________
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Re: Enter "the Garden" (Our Off-topic Chat)

[ Edited ]
I love that, Everyman!  :smileyhappy:  We have rocks in our beds, soil, and probably heads, here, too.  Ha. 
 
~ConnieK
 


Everyman wrote:

I don't garden -- I quarry.


Message Edited by ConnieK on 07-02-2008 03:19 PM
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Re: Enter "the Garden" (Our Off-topic Chat)

I have an exceptionally good "green" thumb -- when it comes to growing weeds! I haven't read as far as the Secret Garden section of this book so I don't know what it is like but the idea of a "Secret Garden" has a lot of appeal. A specially isolated place where it is quiet and there are beautifully arranged plants, paths and maybe a small waterfall or fountain. A little sanctuary cut off from the main world. A secret place just to be rejuvenated. If you could create your own secret garden what would it be like?



ConnieK wrote:
Some of you mentioned that you enjoy gardening. How does your garden grow? :smileywink: I would love to grow a garden, but alas, I seem to be cursed with a lack of ability. I can't seem to even keep a house plant alive.....I did manage to keep a nice batch of miniature roses going in planters one year, but then I don't know what happened to them after that. And, for some lucky reason, I am able to attract hummingbirds each year to a feeder. I enjoy their visits so much! I do so much enjoy other people's gardens. Some of them are really spectacular. Interestingly, some of the best gardens I've seen just looking by driving by are often in the lawns of the smallest and humblest of homes.
~ConnieK


Message Edited by ConnieK on 07-01-2008 11:44 AM

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Bayles
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Re: Enter "the Garden" (Our Off-topic Chat)

 
I have been living in my house for less than a year, so I am enjoying discovering what is already growing.  I have also been planting quite a bit.
 
I have in my little kitchen garden:
6 tomato (just harvested the first one today)
2 grape tomato
3 green pepper
6' of bush beans
3 bush cucumber hills
1 eggplant
basil
cilantro
swiss chard
rosemary
6 okra
 
and many many flowers in the flower beds.
 
I have discovered:
daffodils
day lilies
magnolia
yarrow
blue and deep red hydrangea
honeysuckle
butterfly bush
iris
and flowering shrubs and trees that I don't recognize
giant pecan tree
deep red mums
elephant ear plant
several types of holly
 
Bayles
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sbrushing
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Re: Enter "the Garden" (Our Off-topic Chat)

I have one of those humble homes with a small garden, but it is full of hybrid tea roses, floribundas and two English garden roses.  I also have hydrangeas that I make blue by amending the soil.  Alyssum, impatiens, nasturims, and herbs fill in every extra ounce of room.  And in a pot, I have three magnificent tomato plants.  Gardening eases stress, brings great joy, and makes me feel closer to God.  My backyard is like a private oasis....no one would expect it! 
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Re: Enter "the Garden" (Our Off-topic Chat)

sbushing
I also have hydrangeas that I make blue by amending the soil.
-----------------------------------------

How do you do that? I have some hydrangeas and I would love to make them blue!
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"The Thirteenth Tale" and Diane Setterfield

When Diane Setterfield was touring with her first novel, she talked about how her childhood reading influenced The Thirteenth Tale.  The last novel she mentioned was The Secret Garden; I'm not going to spoil TTT for anyone who hasn't read it, but gardening and a garden figure prominently in the novel.
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Re: Enter "the Garden" (Our Off-topic Chat)

Welcome, Bayles!  It's interesting to see what's been planted before you that comes up in a new place.  Is there a feeling of obligation, a kind of stewardship about previous gardens, do you think?  Do you feel free to change out existing plants, or do you think the right thing to do is to keep them as they are?
 
~ConnieK
 


Bayles wrote:
 
I have been living in my house for less than a year, so I am enjoying discovering what is already growing.  I have also been planting quite a bit.
 
~ConnieAnnKirk




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Re: Enter "the Garden" (Our Off-topic Chat)


niki wrote:
sbushing
I also have hydrangeas that I make blue by amending the soil.
-----------------------------------------

How do you do that? I have some hydrangeas and I would love to make them blue!

Niki -- I believe this article is quite accurate on the subject. As it says, do consider carefully if they are presently pink, because it is difficult to reverse. (Personally, while I like blue ones, I find the pink ones more unusual.)
"Seize the moments of happiness, love and be loved! That is the only reality in the world, all else is folly. It is the one thing we are interested in here." -- Leo Tolstoy
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Re: Enter "the Garden" (Our Off-topic Chat)

Hi Connie,
 
I feel a real responsibility to keep what is there.  So, I have been trimming back bushes in the front rather than cutting everything down and starting over.  However, this is somewhat easy to do as there are many places to plant new flowers.  (By the way, I have harvested one tomato and have 4 more that are just about ripe - tomato soup and toast for supper!)
 
In the back, however, I did cut down a shrub that didn't fit in with the rest of the landscape and was so big, I lost half of that yard.  I also cut down a large ornamental grass because it didn't fit.  It's a rough rock retaining wall with three bushes.  The grass crowded the sidewalk and blocked the view of the bushes and the upper lawn.  With these two plants gone, everything fits in the old fashined landscape.
 
It's the same in the house.  I have a tiny kitchen and a small butler's pantry.  I should knock down the wall between them and make a nice modern kitchen.  However, it would ruin so much of the authenticity of the Craftman's syle home.  And, just because large kitchens are popular now, doesn't mean that every house needs to have one.
 
I am changing the colors on the wall.  Lighter colors to accent the wood trim and make the rooms lighter.  The colors now aren't so dark, but they seem to absorb the light.
 
(Is it ok to talk about the inside of the house in this thread?  I think of the Secret Garden as being just as much about nesting as gardening.)
 
 
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Re: Enter "the Garden" (Our Off-topic Chat)

[ Edited ]


Bayles wrote, in part:
 
(Is it ok to talk about the inside of the house in this thread?  I think of the Secret Garden as being just as much about nesting as gardening.)
 
 


Oh, of course!  The off-topic chat thread is pretty open, really.  I just thought starting off with gardens might be a nice tie-in to our novel.  Readers take this thread anywhere they like, pretty much.  So, tangents, welcome and even expected!
 
EnJOY!
 
~ConnieK


Message Edited by ConnieK on 07-07-2008 12:02 PM
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Re: Enter "the Garden" (Our Off-topic Chat)



ConnieK wrote:


Bayles wrote, in part:
(Is it ok to talk about the inside of the house in this thread? I think of the Secret Garden as being just as much about nesting as gardening.)


Oh, of course! The off-topic chat thread is pretty open, really. I just thought starting off with gardens might be a nice tie-in to our novel. Readers take this thread anywhere they like, pretty much. So, tangents, welcome and even expected!
EnJOY!
~ConnieK


Message Edited by ConnieK on 07-07-2008 12:02 PM





Well, on another topic. I have been thinking about the Victorian era and the way Victorians thought about life. Prunesquallor has had some excellent comments in regard to this in comments about chapters 7-14.

My grandmother was raised as a Victorian woman. She was born in 1886 and so would have been 26 when Secret Garden was written in 1912. She raised my mother, born 1918, in a very Victorian fashion. In turn, I was raised very conservatively. Now, as I deal with my new daughter-in-law, I have to tell myself to loosen up! She is much bolder than I ever was.

What do we, collectively, know about the Victorian mind-set?
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Re: The Victorian Age

Travelighter -- you might enjoy pursuing your questions about the Victorian age here. We find ourselves on the Women's Lit thread frequently using it as a reference when we want some background on that era.

Victorian Web

If this sort of thing interests you, you might want to search the indexes of this journal and see if your local library can get you copies:

Victorian Literature and Culture

Another possible resource is: Maureen Moran, Victorian Literature and Culture. Sections of this are available online as a Google book. I just did a quick look at the section beginning on page 35 about "The Woman Question" -- pp. 35-37 were accessible to me. The link was so long I wasn't successful in copying it, but a Google search should find it if you are interested.

Review of the above.



travelighter wrote:
>Well, on another topic. I have been thinking about the Victorian era and the way Victorians thought about life. Prunesquallor has had some excellent comments in regard to this in comments about chapters 7-14.

My grandmother was raised as a Victorian woman. She was born in 1886 and so would have been 26 when Secret Garden was written in 1912. She raised my mother, born 1918, in a very Victorian fashion. In turn, I was raised very conservatively. Now, as I deal with my new daughter-in-law, I have to tell myself to loosen up! She is much bolder than I ever was.

What do we, collectively, know about the Victorian mind-set?
"Seize the moments of happiness, love and be loved! That is the only reality in the world, all else is folly. It is the one thing we are interested in here." -- Leo Tolstoy
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Re: The Victorian Age


Peppermill wrote:
Travelighter -- you might enjoy pursuing your questions about the Victorian age here. We find ourselves on the Women's Lit thread frequently using it as a reference when we want some background on that era.

Victorian Web


Victorian Literature and Culture



Thanks! I'll check these out.

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Prunesquallor
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Re: The Victorian Age


Peppermill wrote:
Travelighter -- you might enjoy pursuing your questions about the Victorian age here. We find ourselves on the Women's Lit thread frequently using it as a reference when we want some background on that era.

Victorian Web

If this sort of thing interests you, you might want to search the indexes of this journal and see if your local library can get you copies:

Victorian Literature and Culture

Another possible resource is: Maureen Moran, Victorian Literature and Culture. Sections of this are available online as a Google book. I just did a quick look at the section beginning on page 35 about "The Woman Question" -- pp. 35-37 were accessible to me. The link was so long I wasn't successful in copying it, but a Google search should find it if you are interested.

Review of the above.



travelighter wrote:
>Well, on another topic. I have been thinking about the Victorian era and the way Victorians thought about life. Prunesquallor has had some excellent comments in regard to this in comments about chapters 7-14.

My grandmother was raised as a Victorian woman. She was born in 1886 and so would have been 26 when Secret Garden was written in 1912. She raised my mother, born 1918, in a very Victorian fashion. In turn, I was raised very conservatively. Now, as I deal with my new daughter-in-law, I have to tell myself to loosen up! She is much bolder than I ever was.

What do we, collectively, know about the Victorian mind-set?

I just got a copy of Maureen Moran's book, excellent source material for getting a background view of the Victorian culture in which FHB's "Secret Garden" was created. I'll be back later with some useful (I hope) synopses from her introduction.

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Re: The Victorian Age

That would be lovely, Prunesquallor.

 

~ConnieK

 

 


Prunesquallor wrote:
I just got a copy of Maureen Moran's book, excellent source material for getting a background view of the Victorian culture in which FHB's "Secret Garden" was created. I'll be back later with some useful (I hope) synopses from her introduction.

 

~ConnieAnnKirk




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Kabgirl24
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The Idea of a Secret Garden

The Idea of a Secret Garden is so enticing and that is how this book continues to touch people.  Everyone has in their minds the idea of unblemished beauty.  Everyone at one point or another wants to get away to a spot where no one else knows.  You add the elements beauty and hideout and what comes of it?  The dream of paradise.  Think about it, the scent of lavender caressing your sense of smell, barefoot in a sea of clovers, honeysuckles for the tastebuds, a pond of sweet water, An untouched view of perfection for your eyes. 

Unfortunately, in today's fast world of progress, no one has time for that.  We are all so busy, especially those of a more humble means.  The book 'The Secret Garden' aside from the endearing story opens up our own curiosity of what we would do if we had a hideout, a getaway.  Would we be like Mary and perfect our garden, or would we leave it to remain dead and ungrowing? 

 

I love to garden, but being in the military and living in the barracks makes doing such activities almost impossible and impractical.  Otherwise, I'd follow Mary's example and sow my seeds.

 

KatieB

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ConnieAnnKirk
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Re: The Idea of a Secret Garden

Welcome, KatieB!

 

You paint a lovely picture, here, so those who read it can imagine it along with you.  Thank you!  And thank you for your service to our country.

 

~ConnieK

 

 


Kabgirl24 wrote:

The Idea of a Secret Garden is so enticing and that is how this book continues to touch people.  Everyone has in their minds the idea of unblemished beauty.  Everyone at one point or another wants to get away to a spot where no one else knows.  You add the elements beauty and hideout and what comes of it?  The dream of paradise.  Think about it, the scent of lavender caressing your sense of smell, barefoot in a sea of clovers, honeysuckles for the tastebuds, a pond of sweet water, An untouched view of perfection for your eyes. 

Unfortunately, in today's fast world of progress, no one has time for that.  We are all so busy, especially those of a more humble means.  The book 'The Secret Garden' aside from the endearing story opens up our own curiosity of what we would do if we had a hideout, a getaway.  Would we be like Mary and perfect our garden, or would we leave it to remain dead and ungrowing? 

 

I love to garden, but being in the military and living in the barracks makes doing such activities almost impossible and impractical.  Otherwise, I'd follow Mary's example and sow my seeds.

 

KatieB


 

~ConnieAnnKirk




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