Guest Blogger: Susanne Kondracke, Executive Director of The Friends of the Ohio Governor’s Residence and Heritage Garden

photoSo, this is day three and the pressure is on. I officially am now a “blogger,” albeit a temporary “guest blogger,” and a handful of people are actually reading my writing. I need to be eloquent and interesting. As any writing professor would challenge, I need to write something that others will want to read.  How am I going to do that? How am I going to sufficiently articulate all that we are experiencing here in this endearing coastal community? It is going to be difficult; but, I will do my best.

The extended-weekend gardening experience at Lakeside has encompassed walking tours, golf cart rides, delicious meals, lemonade on porches, lively conversations, bird sightings, toe tapping and hand clapping. One of our fellow travelers exclaimed at dinner, “This is one of the best times I’ve ever had.”

By the time we depart on Tuesday evening, English garden designer Amanda Patton will have presented more than four hours of fascinating lectures on her theories of exemplary garden design. Her approaches to garden design stem from her keen knowledge of the tenets of art design.

An accomplished artist herself, Amanda is passionate about her craft and it shows in her thoughtful perspective and honest critiques.

She discussed the elements of symmetry, line, form and colour (spelled the English way). We intently listened and made mental notes of what we need to do when we get back to our own spaces.

photoAmanda gave us a few guidelines and one rule that most of us will likely consider when we select our next plant to place. It will be up to each one of us to find the tools that we want to use to create our unique, final masterpieces. Thank you for the inspiration, Amanda.

On Sunday, while assembled in Hoover Auditorium, we heard Pierpoint’s hymn, “For the Beauty of the Earth.” It has been a treat to study, in depth, such universal beauty these past few days during our stay in Lakeside.

And, as I gathered in the family home of my dear high school friend, the following lyrics, by an unknown artist, came to mind, “Make new friends and keep the old, one is silver and the other gold.”