Picturing August

I’ve been on a sort-of break from work in an attempt to unwind from a year of madness, although so far most of my break has been spent painting, framing art, and doing the work of making this place feel like a home. Our move-in was thrust right in the middle of writing my third book, which at the time meant setting things up as best we could and then getting back to it quickly.

We are not minimalists. We’ve collected an assortment of strange things over the years, and I find comfort and inspiration when I am surrounded by those things. I am visually oriented — my eyes need to dance around a room. I hate plain walls.

Unfortunately, my neck and shoulder is acting up (again), which says to me that it is time to take this whole down time thing more seriously. No more trying to attempt to take a break. I need to take a real break. For REAL!

On that note, I leave you with a selection of garden pics. I’ll be back posting regularly when my neck/shoulder/arm permits it.

‘Rocoto’ hot pepper flower.

‘Plum Frost’ Coleus.


‘Molten Fire’ amaranth (Amaranthus caudatus) and Chiltepin hot pepper in a big container. I bought these tall, colourful pots on sale at Ikea for $4.99 each. Score!

What remains from a scrambled egg lunch: turkey eggs and zucchini flowers with the ends ripped off (the petals went into the meal). The squash flowers are coming in record numbers this year. I’ve been harvesting a dozen every single day since July!

Broom plumes and ‘Scarlet’ runnerbean flowers.

Blue Ensign’ morning glory (Convolvulus tricolor). This is a nice dwarf morning glory that is perfect for pots.

Gayla Trail
Gayla is a writer, photographer, and former graphic designer with a background in the Fine Arts, cultural criticism, and ecology. She is the author, photographer, and designer of best-selling books on gardening, cooking, and preserving.

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10 thoughts on “Picturing August

  1. Gayla I hope you feel better soon. A year and a half ago I had a similar problem with my right arm, shoulder and neck. After seeing a physiotherapist and getting a massage I started doing yoga. The pains have not reappeared. In fact my whole body feels better. Taking up yoga is one of the best things I have done.

  2. I hope you get lots of rest and feel way better soon..you have to commit to a break like you’d commit to anything else:) Maybe a few good juicy books to hunker down with:) Or dvd’s of a favorite tv series!! I’m excited for your new book…you like to hide behind your plants on the covers lol :)

  3. Ciao Gayla-

    I’m glad you’re paying attention to your body and giving into the convalescence it needs. It’s hard to do that sometimes, especially when the garden is screaming at you.

  4. Good call Gayla.
    Went through a similar muscular/nerve problem in my thirties.
    Took up pilates, which is nothing more than yoga in constant movement… so move slowly and gain strength for a while with whatever method makes you feel best, and don’t panic.
    I’m 54 now, and I feel better than I did in my twenties.

    Adios.

  5. Feel better soon Gayla! I’m glad you are listening to your body. I’m guilty of the same push push push until I get the big NO. I love all your pictures today and have jotted down a couple I want to add to the garden next year when we return to the states. I especially love the first one. The bee looks like he is cradling the pollen laden flower. Love it love it love it! What kind of flower/plant is it?

  6. Take time to mend. I will miss your blogging but your body has spoken. Find solace in your garden BUT no lifting or hauling. This past weekend we did a road trip to Copake Falls, NY and attended a lecture by Margaret Roach and visited her garden. It was great and she speaks highly of your efforts. Now rest.

  7. Melanie: I used to do yoga but have been slack about it recently. I think a slack diet and lack of exercise are some of the culprits here so I am paying attention to both.

    Jennifer: The first image is of a cluster of Morelle de Balbis flowers: http://www.yougrowgirl.com/tag/morelle-de-balbis/

    I’m not going away — just posting a little less regularly so that i can spend less time at the computer and more time giving my body the break that it needs.

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