Sunday, March 01, 2009

The 3:15 project

Hello - long time, no blog etc... I had a good time at Textiles in Focus, with Gill, Rosie, Sue and WyeSue last weekend; my photos of the weekend weren't great so the best place to go is the Art Van Go blog entry - yes, that's me in the first one... Unfortunately nowhere near as lucrative for our stand as last year - finished items didn't really move although we sold patterns and yarns...

However. Having somewhat recovered, I've had a really productive weekend sorting out a couple of years' worth of paperwork and filing it all, catching up with some e-mails and so on. One of the tasks I gave myself this weekend (and yes, I do make a list if I've got a weekend at home)

was to sweep the side passage which still has all last autumn's leaves in it (and I'm not entirely sure I actually cleared up from the previous autumn), along with many, many other things. I've had it on the list for a long time, but this afternoon I actually did it.

The garden used to be beautiful, but I really didn't ever do much of the physical work on it, having married into a wonderfully green-fingered family. Over the last six summers, when I've had it to manage on my own, it's slowly gone to rack and ruin, and has been Colonised by Borage, which has enormous taproots; and last summer I couldn't bear to go out there at all once everything started growing again.

This year will be different.

So I've decided that one day over the weekend (preferably Sunday but I can't bet on that if I'm away) I'll take photos at 3:15pm from the same spots, and see if I can spot the difference... 3:15pm just because that was the time I thought of the idea.

So here's the view up the side of the house towards the Green - we can check for progress of leaves on the lime trees (I'd already removed one of those green containers of leaves from it)
and the view in the other direction towards the rest of the garden
and the view from the edge of the patio - this is what I like to think of as the Abomination of Desolation shot...

However, when I typed in the title for this post, I thought "that looks like something you'd see outside a Baptist church or something" and went to see what chapter 3, verse 15 in the different books of the Bible had to say about gardens.

Genesis 3:15 is garden-related as it's addressed to the serpent in the Garden of Eden, but a bit grim, particularly given the number of worms I'd just accidentally killed. "I will make you enemies of each other/You and the woman/your offspring and her offspring./It will crush your head/and you will strike its heel".

Leviticus 3:15 is, Bible-readers will be able to anticipate, about entrails; and Deuteronomy 3:15 about territory. So, no surprises there then.

After that it's all a bit dull until Judges 3:15: "Then the Israelites cried to the Lord, and the Lord raised up a deliverer for them, Ehud the son of Gera the Benjamite; he was left-handed". Yay; probably the first leftie role-model? (I note that my teenage self underlined that bit, and then promptly forgot about it...)

2 Chronicles 3:15 is unmemorable in itself, but 3:14 is striking - Solomon is building the Temple in Jerusalem: "He made the Veil of violet, scarlet, crimson and fine linen; he worked cherubs on it". I'm not entirely sure he'll have sat there personally with his embroidery hoop; he probably had chaps who did that sort of thing for him, but the image is rather pleasant...

Isaiah 3:15 is predictably on-message on social justice "By what right do you crush my people/and grind the faces of the poor? It is the Lord Yahweh Sabaoth who speaks". In contrast in Lamentations 3:15 we find that "He has given me my fill of bitterness,/he has made me drunk with wormwood"; the history of absinthe is evidently more ancient than I thought...

Nahum 3:15 has the somewhat unnerving message "increase like the locust/increase like the grasshopper" which doesn't bode well for gardening enterprises. Habbakuk has the arresting image "You have trampled the sea with your horses,/the surge of great waters" which sadly reminds me of Echo and the Bunnymen...

In the New Testament, although I know there are lots of gardening-type analogies in the parables, it's all a bit prosaic where 3:15s are concerned.

So, the winners:

Wisdom 3:15 - "For the fruit of honest labours is glorious,/and the root of understanding does not decay".
And although Zechariah, in common with many of the minor prophets, doesn't actually have a 3:15, the last verse of chapter 3 says "On that day - it is the Lord who speaks - you will entertain each other under your vine and fig tree".

A bit of hard labour, and a bit of sitting around eating and drinking - sums up gardens for me.

And a bonus pic for those who've got this far - I'd hope to do the three pictures above and then an extra each time: the Bug in full winter fig. This won't last very long - she's about to moult. I can tell this because it's the only time of the year she ends up with knots in her ruff-fur I have to comb out. Eleven months of the year, I can completely ignore the comb...

Oh and also, having gone all biblical and organic, back to normal now - one of the things I realised as I was sweeping is that some git has half-inched my stepladder from the side of the house. I mean, who steals a cheap, rickety, paint-encrusted, 15-year-old ladder? Gah!


Mary deB said...

And this day holds the record for most rhyming slang -- you and London Daily Photo.

My garden is half overgrown (the front) and half concrete (the back). I don't have a vine and fig tree, but I'll entertain by the pot of basil if ever summer comes!

SusieH said...

You have been busy! Love the picture from the show/fest, and your HelterSkelter hanging behind you :)

Best of luck with the garden - I pay a wonderful man to deal with the big garden, but the tiny front garden is my turf, and every year I neglect it too long and end up spending hours pulling weeds. maybe this year I will get on top of things sooner.

p.s. I too hate borage!

Wibbo said...

I think a little Slash and Burn is called for in the garden :oP

Daisy said...

Good luck with the gardening - I love the idea of taking the photo at the same time!