Saturday, October 24, 2009

Mary's Garden



A Mary's Garden is a garden full of flowers. At first, it was only for flowers and plants that grew during Mary's time, or that grew in Palestine. But when that isn't possible, it can be plants that were named for Mary. There are religious names, botanical names and the common names, that we know the flowers and plants as.

Maidenhair fern is adiantum tenerum, or Our Lady's hair.
Begonia is begonia fuchsiold, or Mary's heart.
Miniature Rose is rosa, or Mary's thorn.
Geranium is pelargonum dom., or Beautiful Lady.
I could go on for pages.

The idea started in Wood's Hole, Massachusetts. Wood's Hole is one of my haunts. A summer isn't a summer without a visit to the Woods Hole Science Aquarium. In 1932 Mr. Lillie built an Angelus tower with two bells and made a garden dedicated to Mary to grace the tower. The garden is beautifully maintained, even today, and has numerous flowers of Our Lady from English medieval times.

Some day, I want a flower garden dedicated to Mary. For now, I content myself to making plant gardens and putting statues in it. I made one for my friend Fr. Fleck, but it didn't last long. He had to throw away the pot, but he kept the statue on his dresser. I think it's a nice present to give a sick friend. I really don't pay attention to whether the plants have any Mary connection. I pick them to complement the statue.

Here's a picture of my Mary Garden. It's a kitchen window garden. This is our Lady giving a Rosary to St. Catherine of Siena, and the Baby Jesus giving a Rosary to St. Dominic. This picture is sometimes called Our Lady of Pompeii, or Our Lady of Rosary. I chose it because St. Dominic is the preacher of the power of the Rosary.

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