Wednesday, July 21, 2010

My Husband the Volunteer

My Husband has been interested in gardening for as long as I can remember. When he was in college at NC State University he worked for an English professor who hybridized day lilies. Professor Wynn was well know in the Day Lily world. When he had my husband dig up lilies to dispose of Kermit would bring them home.

That was before we had a permanent home so he would keep them alive and we would drive them up to Walkertown, NC where his Mother lives and plant them there. She still has some of the original day lilies. Through the years as we purchased homes we would move some of the day lilies with us. They are scattered around NC, AL, PA and SC. We still have a few at our home.

So, When Kermit retired he became a volunteer at the SC Botanical Gardens in Clemson, SC. He started off working in the Hosta garden. Because he was one of the younger volunteers he often got the job of digging holes for planting.

After a while he met Joe Smith, a volunteer who is an expert on Camellias. Kermit decided that he would like to learn about Camellias so he started working with Joe. As the years passed he noticed that the Hydrangea garden looked a little neglected and inquired about working there. James Arnold, one of the directors at garden, idea was to plant many different species of hydrangeas. He wanted South Carolinians to be able to visit and get an idea of what type of hydrangea they might want to plant in their gardens.

After a while everyone became acquainted with Kermit and found out that he was also a great handyman. When the need for a garden gate arrived last year, James asked Kermit if he would design and build the gate. He did.

This is the results. It's hard to tell the size by the photos but each side of the gate is 5ft. wide. The gate is beautiful and the plan is to plant a climbing vine beside the arbor and have it wind its way across the top. Maybe next year I can post a photo with the gate covered in blooms.


  1. Beautiful gate! What a pair you two make! Kermit is very talented, too!

  2. The gate is beautiful but I was sparked by the mention of Walkertown. My Mom and I used to go to a fabric ship in Walkertown. It was full of all kinds of stuff and I loved looking around there for some great bargains. One year we got a lot of leather hides that we used for many projects. I wonder if that store is still there? I haven't been in years! I grew up north of there in Bassett, VA