Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Seed Catalogues--Hurray!

Yes, they have started coming. Those lovely seed catalogues full of luscious photographs and wistful desires. I love this time of year when the flower catalogues start jamming my mailbox. Hey, it's better than a boatload of rejection letters! It always makes me a bit wistful for spring and for simple country life--the house full of savory aromas and rich colors. I used to have a large garden in my back yard, back when I still had a little farm. I loved to plant veggies and tend to them through the steamy months of summer. Funny, when these little tomes of graphic beauty arrive, I always start cooking more, too. Those beautiful catalogues just inspire me to cook from scratch and bask in the aroma of comfort food as I anticipate the return of long, light days filled with warmth and birdsong.

I can't help but imagine placing a huge order for all kinds of exotic flowers, things I could never in a million years actually grow because I just don't have that kind of green thumb. So I try to find some lovely phlox or some geraniums and petunias, vinkas, begonias, all the more pedestrian blossoms that make our house look welcoming.

Interestingly, reading through theses catalogues often educates my writing as well. My settings are suddenly populated with the vibrant little heads of native flowers and foliage that build the character of the book. When I started working on my most recent novel, I stopped to research the flora and fauna of the Gennessee River valley. It had to be right.

What simple bits of mail inspire you?


  1. Ah, I love that post!

    What mail inspires me? Hmmmmmm - maybe royalty checks! May I get such mail in the near future!

  2. lol! I miss gardening. We lived on an acre in Georgia and every spring I'd get out there with my little basket and plant away.

    I don't get to garden much now, thanks to our Communist HomeOwner's Association. They do all the landscaping and maintenance, so they put in the flowers. What I wouldn't give for a rose bush or a snapdragon...Must get out of this subdivision ;).

  3. Those little dictators! HOA's are going suck the life out American neighborhoods. There are a few rules imposed by the borough, here, but all fairly benign. I still plant what I want, where I want. My neighbor's lawn is a hoot--2 large gnomes guarding the corner of the lot (we call them GOUS--gnomes of unusual size), and up by the house is a manger scene and a permanent Santa light post. Their mailbox is Santa's workshop, and you should see the joint on holidays! They have to rent storage just for their decorations!


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