Today I had a chance to walk Maple Rock Gardens with Sherry, an editor from Garden Gate Magazine, and Debbie Arrington. You might recognize Debbie’s name. For years she was the Garden Writer for the Sacramento Bee. It was fun. Being garden enthusiasts we both looked at plants through the same lens. I have not walked Maple Rock lately looking through the lens of beauty. I’ve been hustling around getting ready for the tour this Saturday. Four weeks ago a major portion of the garden was torn up. The construction has been something that has completely dominated my mind and I haven’t been able to stop and smell the roses, so to speak. Walking with Sherry, Debbie and Photographer Jack I had a chance to reflect on the garden through the lens of beauty. What I gained today is something that I had lost. I had lost the perspective of how beautiful a garden can be and just how much it can give back. I guess the old saying is, “stop and smell the roses”. I can’t guess what your “stop and smell the roses” moment is, but mine is the boundless creativity that the garden gives me. The garden is patient with me. And as long as I am patient with it, nothing is asked in return.

I talked with Sherry about being patient with the garden. We agreed that people need to be more patient with their gardens. Today, while we walked around Maple Rock, I saw numerous things that were wrong and bothered me. The pressure of opening up your home to 2,000 of your closest friends can be scary. Given the fact that we had much of it torn apart due to construction I’ve come to the conclusion that I just need to release to nature and let it be what it is.The funny thing is that visitors to Maple Rock on Saturday might not be able to figure out what we did that was so invasive to the garden.

I hope you will join me this Saturday, May 11th from 9am to 3pm as Maple Rock Gardens gives way to Bloomtastic. We will be offering lunch, your favorite libation including a cocktail if you wish. Greg will be playing music in the garden and Earl will be running the trains.

Relax. Take time to smell the roses.

Take time to recognize the child within and watch the trains.

Take a deep breathe. Enjoy the view.

Simply breathe and enjoy.

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I have a different approach to designing a garden. I see things as noise. When I walk into a garden I mentally take out all the things that are noisy until my mind is calm. Then when deciding what to put back in the garden, I put back things that aren’t noisy.

After months of long rains and a very quick start to Spring my head has been completely noisy. Our projects were pushed further and further out with each storm this Spring. With Bloomtastic looming on the horizon the drumbeat of noise continued to pound. Thanks Sherry, Debbie and Jack for making me stop and walk the garden, however so briefly.

This Saturday I hope you can walk the garden and experience what I have experienced today.

See you this weekend at Maple Rock Gardens,


How can you help out those impacted by the Camp Fire?

You have helped out so much! Here is what’s needed – Visa Gift Cards and cash. Gift cards and cash can be delivered directly to the nursery or sent to us by mail. Our address is:

Attn: Nichole
High-Hand Nursery
P.O. Box 2280
Loomis, CA 95650

You can also call us and give us a credit card over the phone. Our number is 916-652-2065. We will turn all checks and credit card transactions into cash.

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