The Medford's garden tour was great, almost like a trip back east...
But first we ate--and drank a lovely glass of homemade grape (it's a fruit group after all). It was kind of a European lunch lasting about three hours! Lots of story telling and laughing. THEN we spent another couple of hours wandering in the yard, and could have spent more time but it was 5:30. Jim and Effie just don't know how to say git!
What became apparent as we strolled was how much more water Jim has than most East Mountain folks. We peered into an old stone faced well, and the water level was only about 12 feet down (and used to be higher). Multiple springs used to flow through the property, and several are still intermittent. There is a small year round pond complete with six huge carp, and again the water level is lower than it used to be, but bog plants like cattails, willow and horsetail that surround the area testify to the water table. A lower spillover pond is popular with the local bears, and scat and deep prints were unnervingly plentiful. A flock of turkeys are also daily visitors.
Green grass, split rail fence, an orchard of mature fruit and nut trees, a towering weeping willow--it might almost be Virginia except the mountain backdrop is a lot higher than the Blue Ridge.
The Medfords have a variety of apple trees, peaches, English and black walnut, butternut, even elderberry. Besides the fruit, they have planted many other trees including honeylocust, and the prettiest redbud I've seen in New Mexico--also the tallest trumpet vine I've seen up here, at least twenty feet up a dead tree. There are roses, iris, lilacs, columbines, patches of snow-on-the-mountain that took me back to my grandmother's garden in Kentucky.
The property is so verdant and unlike New Mexico, it's being used for a TV pilot. The buildings on the 28 acres will be part of the film too, including the main house, barn, and cabin. A structure that predates WWII (and my favorite part of the tour) is their root cellar, jammed with Effie's canning. They've never lost a jar to freezing which is more than I can say.
We had a lot of fun, visiting, joking (when pressed for the varieties of apples, Jim said "well, there's red ones and green ones."), at least I think he was joking. Hopefully, our meeting next month will be another good one. Dwight is thinking we'll try to visit Los Alamos, and Martha's garden before the weather turns. We'll see you then...