A white cemetery rose for you today, my dear Kat.
Kat and I met early this year, through our blogs. She wrote about a trip to an architectural salvage place near me, and I knew she had to live nearby. We exchanged blog comments, began writing emails back and forth, discovered that we have a freakishly huge number of things in common, and now we have a real live friendship ... all because both of us were open to the idea of meeting an Internet buddy.
If you haven't read Kat's blog, you are definitely missing out on something wonderful.
I met Robert, one of my dearest gardening friends (you guessed it) online, via the GardenWeb Antique Rose forum. Three years ago, I got an email from another GardenWeb friend (who I hadn't met in person at that point either) asking if I'd like to ride with her to spend the day in Robert's garden (who neither of us had met). Before you start issuing warnings about axe murders and Internet stalkers, let me tell you that I had Robert's name, which is unusual enough to Google, and I found that he was a high school teacher. If his background check came out good enough for the school system, it's good enough for me ... and the three of us had a wonderful first-afternoon-of-many together.
We were laughing as I took this photo for 'evidence' while we were rustling roses.
Robert and I have spent many lovely days in each other's gardens, or running around the countryside in search of the next great rose discovery. He is always up for an adventure -- whether it's rustling roses in a cemetery,or filling the car with roses at a nursery, we always have a blast. I treasure his friendship, his support, and his advice. Without Robert's encouragement, Hartwood Roses would not exist. He is the one that convinced me to take a chance and open a nursery ... some days I don't know whether to thank him or throttle him.
Here he is, putting fertilizer in the planting holes, as we plant roses in my rose field.
In 2007, I took advantage of the power of the Internet by hosting a Garden Social and Plant Swap, with invitations issued via GardenWeb and Rosarian's Corner forum posts. This gathering has become an annual event, growing larger each year. It's become a gathering of friends ... real friends ... and I eagerly look forward to it each spring.
Here we are at the first Social. That's me in the football jersey, with Kathy, Jim, and Robert. I love these guys!
I'm now taking this one step farther ... how about a gathering of blog friends? No specific plans yet, other than the a general idea of bringing together some of the bloggers in the area who are up for an afternoon (or more) of food and fun and friends next spring. Is this something that you'd like to do?
Let me know how you feel about this. If there's someone you think would be interested, pass this along.
(written by Hartwood Roses. Hartwood Roses blog.)