Thursday, September 4, 2014

My Mom's Dream Memorial

My mom is a Master Gardener.  
She always has been in all of our minds, 
but she actually took the class to become one. 
As part of holding the title of Master Gardener, you have to complete a project to benefit your community. Several years ago, after taking the class, mom created a flower garden at our church as well as at the nursing home where several of our family members
 have resided over the years.
 This is the same nursing home that I volunteered in 
while I was growing up and my mom currently volunteers there 
as well as visits the residents.

Maple Crest Manor -source

The gardens at both locations have flourished 
and been loved by many 
who watch the various flowers bloom over the spring, summer and fall. 

But, that wasn't enough for my mom. 
She wanted to do something bigger. 
Something that she has always imagined.  
This weekend we made it happen.

In front of the Maple Crest Manor in Fayette, Iowa is a strip of land 
that sits between Highway 150 and the driveway into the nursing home. 
In that strip of land are several maple trees. 
My mom has always envisioned hundreds of daffodils 
blooming in that Maple Grove every spring. 
But, she knew it would take a lot of bulbs 
and a lot of workers to make it happen.

All summer long, mom has been digging up her flower beds at home 
and gathering up daffodil bulbs.
I should let you know that if I dug up my flower beds,
 I wouldn't know what the difference between a daffodil bulb or a tulip bulb looked like. 
I can keep plants alive, but my mom has an amazing green thumb.

So, all summer, she gathered up these bulbs and kept them safe until Labor Day. 
She got permission from the city of Fayette to plant the bulbs 
and then made sure they weren't going to mow them over 
before they were done blooming. 
Since the area is under a lot of trees, the grass doesn't grow much there anyway.
 Approval was granted and we were on our way to making it happen.

We all met at the nursing home at 9:30 in the morning on Labor Day.
By all, I mean my two sisters, three of my mom's sisters and her brother-in-law, 
two of my nieces and their four children, and my family 
came with shovels, bulb planters, and gloves to get to work.
My mom wouldn't tell us until it was all done how many bulbs
 we were planting that day and that was probably a good idea. 
I don't think you would ever guess how many bulbs we planted.

Check out all these photos of the hard workers:




One tiny little bulb in each hole.


Many hands make light work.




All the way, 
as far as you can see, 
down to the furthest tree, 
we planted bulbs randomly underneath these trees.


My hands are still sore from pushing down on the shovels and bulb planter.



My mom was completely thrilled. 
Can't you see how happy she is?
Ok, so now I should tell you how many bulbs 
we planted in less than two hours.
Are you ready?

800 Daffodil Bulbs

I am not kidding you. 
We dug 800 holes and planted 800 bulbs in each one of those holes.
Pretty amazing, huh?
Now we just wait and see, hope and pray, that they will bloom.
Some of the smaller bulbs may not bloom this first spring, 
but hopefully each year, more and more will bloom 
eventually filling the strip of land with gorgeous yellow flowers 
and as the breeze blows through, 
maybe the residents will get a hint of daffodil fragrance 
flowing through the door each time someone walks in.


Thanks to my Aunt Kathy for taking the photo 
(and insisting it needed to be taken) 
and my Aunt Cynthia for posting it so I could grab it. 
My Uncle Floyd had already went to the car before we took the photo. 

After the day was done and we had filled up with food 
(of course, also prepared by my mom) 
and headed to our homes, this is what my mom said:

Sept 1, 2014 was an AWESOME day!! Thanks to my AWESOME family!!
 We planted 800 daffodil bulbs in memory of all our dear family members and dear friends who have spent their last years in the excellent care at Maple Crest Manor in Fayette. Thank you seems inadequate! Can't wait till Spring!!!

I think that sums it up exactly.
What a beautiful memory the flowers will be each and every spring. 

Thank you mom for teaching me the value of giving back
and for your amazing gift of gardening
that you have so willingly shared with others. 


2 comments:

Becky Goerend said...

Wowzer! I think I've been to that place. Russ's mom taught 4th grade in Fayette for 28 years and they lived in West Union. Small world again!

Big Rigs 'n Lil' Cookies said...

That is absolutely amazing and wonderful! We will make the trip to Fayette in the spring to enjoy all the blooms!