Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Ralph's lavatera

My lavatera
Two weeks ago, I returned from walking the dog to find my 93-year-old neighbour, Ralph, standing in my back yard, checking out my garden. I was delighted to see him.

He'd been out on an errand, and decided to stop by since he hadn't seen me for a while (we took our summer vacation). "I rang the doorbell, but nobody answered," he said. "What's the name of that flower you gave me?"

When I visited Ralph and Lidia back in May, the day he gave me his amazing squash plant, I gave him a tiny potted lavatera plant that I had started from seed.

"It's big," he said when he visited. "Did you plant any in your garden?"

I told him I had, and after we toured my vegetable garden and I showed him how his amazing squash was climbing our greenhouse, we went to the front yard and I showed him my laughable lavatera.

To be fair, my front gardens are competing with several large elm trees, so it's a real challenge for bedding plants to get enough nutrients to even bloom.

This afternoon I went for coffee with Lidia and Ralph, and took a picture of them with their lavatera bush, promising not to put their picture on the internet, and laughing about how small my lavatera are in comparison.

I told Ralph that his green thumb is much greener than mine.

It made him smile like he makes me smile. I can't help but love my Italian neighbours.

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