Take a slow and deep breath counting to six…. hold for three, then slowly release through your mouth. Repeat a couple more times. Fell better? Good, now you are ready to slowly follow me as together we will begin to explore my friend Adima’s late-spring garden. I say begin because there are so many areas, and I have taken so many photos, that I will share them over several posts, or we would all risk overwhelm: you in scrolling, and I in prepping images.
We shall beging with the area closest to the house.
I captured these images early one morning in early June. The rain had already busted my plans a couple of times, and even that morning I walked around in boots and ready for more rain. But I was spared, and the most I got was drizzle, and even saw a little blue sky here and there. I was out there almost three hours, and I moved slowly, like during a Shinrin-Yoku walk. I wanted to be truly present, so as not to miss anything and instead take in everything, with all my senses, not just my eyes. Whenever I photograph I enter a meditative state in any case, especially when I am photographing nature.
I had not photographed this garden in about five years and a lot has changed since then. Expanded growth, new plants, the hillside forest in the back of the house got cleaned up, trees came down during storms, and some have been replaced. Overall, a lot of work has gone into these extensive grounds, and the experience is more magical than ever. There was also the change in season, as this time I experienced the garden in early June, while the previous time it was end of September. You can see that here if you like, or there will be another link to it at the bottom of this post. There you will also find the story of the house and how Adima came to live here.
In order to be on site and ready to go early in the morning, I stayed at Adima’s overnight. After dinner, we stepped outside in the pitch dark for some fresh air. As we stood silently on this lawn we saw fireflies floating around us everywhere, hundreds of them!
On the downside, we were also being eaten by a gazillion mosquitoes, so our foray into magic was short-lived.
The street coming up from the main road is more of a dirt path as it is unpaved and riddled with holes. You are actually driving through a hillside forest, some of which is part of the property, until you reach the gate, and the private driveway.
Image above: looking down the driveway towards the road. Image below: looking up the driveway to where it gives way to the path that leads into the private part of the forest.
Back to the front of the house, we shall now walk thorough that small gate in the image above then down the first set of steps into an area of the terraced gardens that takes to a little lotus pond with a grotto where a figure of the Madonna sits. This garden has so many special nooks and sweet spots, as you will see.
The Buddha figure is one of Adima’s additions. Oh yes, a couple of the cats followed me around the entire time, and went out of their way to express their highest talent, which is that of tripping people up.
Back up at house-level, above is a glimpse of the view over Lake Maggiore you can enjoy from the garden and from the upstairs windows.
Below we will follow this other set of stairs going down so you can get a view of another part of the terraced gardens, which we will explore in more detail in future posts.
And isn’t this a beautiful kitty?
I hope you have enjoyed this little time-out in nature. In the coming weeks I will be sharing the rest of the images. In the meantime, you might enjoy some of these posts below. The top one on the left, titled “Where Faeries Dwell” is the one I mentioned earlier, showing part of this same garden as it was five years ago in early fall. It is amazing how different things look with a change in light and season, even the house.