Page 21 - Jo Ann Gardner & Heirloom Gardens
ISSUE : Issue 63
Published by Ronald Caplan on 1993/6/1
Well, that's absurd, because people have been tinkering with plants ever since they first knew them and besides, plants hybri? dize in the wild by themselves. But, 1900--you could make an argument for it. Or you could say it was later. Bernard Jackson is the curator of the Newfoundland Botanical Garden at Memorial University. I spent some time with him--he's a wonderful person, a wonderful gardener. And he has a little corner in his botanical garden set aside for what he calls heritage plants of Newfoundland. He's collected them all over Newfoundland, and he's put them there. He says--and this is a very good point-- (that) these aren't descendants of the original plants. These are the original plants. Because they're all grown from a piece of the original plant. They're clones. They are the plant. They're not a descendant, not like a seed.... See, a plant could grow up and form a seed and spill to the ground, and it's another gen? eration. No. These are perennials. These are all grown from a piece of the original plant. And he's traced some of them back 120 years. Bernard Jackson's cutoff date is 1940. And his justification is that this was the era -ao- SUPERIOR ''''''' LIMITED COMPLETE OPTICAL SERVICE Owned & Operated JAMES DEAN Optician W' jr Shirley Sparling Optician and Pair FREE ' "'dir I Mon,"??Tu'. -' Sat. 10 am - 6 pal; Wed. ~ Thurs> ' fil 10 am - & pm I 564-8486 Mayflower Mall Located between Baddeck and Sydney on the Trans-Canada Highway (Route 105) Overlooking the Bras d'Or Lakes Seal Island Motel and Dining Room (Licensed) Seafood Our Specialty 46 Modern Units Swimming Pool Air Conditioning 674-2418 TOUR BUSES WELCOME Country Living at the Seal Island Bridge Jo Ann: The Hop vine • Jackson found one in a garden abandoned 116 years ago, ap? parently brought to Newfound? land from Cape Breton by way of one John MacDonald, originally from the Isle of Skye. I first saw it growing locally at Hector Mac? Kenzie's at Washabuck Bridge. It had been growing at least since the early 1920s. of high hybridi? zation. And I think you can make a point for the fact that the postwar era is the beginning of a new time. And pre-war era was probably the end of those sorts of gardens that were charac? terized by these very hardy, stur? dy plants. I call them very robust, and irreplaceable in some way. They have a kind of beauty that's irreplaceable. And for ordinary people, they just have so many associations. You know, like Grand? ma's Peonies. Now I found certain things that went on here on the island with plants--the way they handled them, the way they planted them, the way they exchanged them, the way they thought about them-- that's universal. It goes on everywhere in the world, and it's called folk gardening. It's also called vernacular gardening. It means--you do it by the seat of your pants. You grow whatever plants are avail? able. You exchange them. You grow them from slips. And so, it doesn't matter where you live in the world. You're not gardening with a lot of money. You're gardening with a lim? ited gene pool. But that gene pool of plants, by its nature, is very hardy, and very enduring. And so certain types of plants are always associated with folk and vernacular gardening. These include Roses, Iris, Peony. And so, they are invested with fantastic and very d6ep feelings by people. Because they've been in the family. So, when the bride moves--and I've found instances of Qatenous&' o' Original Paintings by Cape Breton's Finest Call for information about special showings of • Kenny Boone • Austin Gallivan • Patsy MacAulay-MacKinnon & several other artists 532 King's Road ~ Sydney ~ 567-1744 ADJACENT TO HOLIDAY INN OPEN MAY to NOVEMBER AnnLynk Monday to Saturday • Noon till 8 PM Proprietor
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