Saturday, July 5, 2014

The Big Reveal

Malus 'Profusion'
In the spring of the year, our flowering crab tree located at the front of our house becomes a giant bouquet of pink flowers. We have enjoyed it for some twenty plus years, but it grew, and it grew, and it grew even more. It had covered up the house and was on the roof. Also it had become quite dirty. The fruit made a mess of the walkway, plus it suckered up as most of the old varieties do. A year ago we engaged an arborist to reduce its size and get it off of the roof. Even though crabs are hard to trim, he did a fine job.

This spring came and the discussion of the tree got serious. Even though I am opposed to cutting down a healthy tree, considering its size for its location, we decided maybe it should come down. It provided a lot of shade and I had a great shade garden under the tree. One day when I had been out of town, I arrived home late and it was dark. My husband said to me, did you miss something? The discussion became a reality. The tree was gone and cleaned up before I could reconsider. End of discussion.

Now the shade garden had become a sun garden. We looked naked, but after some adjustment, I had to admit, it did look better. You could see our house.

We decided not to hurry into the next step. We would give it some thought. I tried to visualize how to revamp this space.

About four months ago, my daughter and I, made a trip to the Toledo Museum of Art. On our way  we stopped in Waterville, OH at George Carruth's "Garden Smiles" studio. It was there that I first learned of Dale Rogers and his art. I mentioned this to my husband and surprisingly he was receptive of me making contact with the artist. After a lovely conversation , I commissioned Mr. Rogers to create me  "Swirl Bird", a Suessical style tree and bird. It is made of Cor-Ten steel with a stainless steel bird perched on the top of the tree. I could visualize this in the spot where our tree once grew. I would not need to water or weed.

After a long wait, I get an e-mail saying my piece would be shipped by freight. The next afternoon we were working in our back gardens when I heard air brakes. I walked to the front of the house and here was a large UPS freight truck delivering my piece of art. Now how is that for being quick. It came from Haverhill, Ma.


The Unveiling
So now we needed a cement pad to bolt it to, so Fred and I mixed concrete to make cement. We let it dry for three days.  A friend assisted Fred in placing it on the pad. Thanks Mike! We had to decide how to position it. We will wait ten days for the cement to cure before bolting it down. I removed the hostas as it was going to be too hot for them. I may have to make other gardening adjustments until all is in scale.

Making Our Concrete
Putting in Place
I love the piece and it is a major part of my "Art In The Garden".

"Swirl Bird" by Dale Rogers



  1. LOVE IT. That Fred is a daring man to cut down the tree while you were gone. Way to go Fred. Love Shelley

  2. He just happened to run into the tree trimmer so acted on it. I did have second thoughts, but it was done. I do love it. Thanks Shelly for reading.

  3. I love your new garden art! and that story sounds like something my hubby would do too ;) I think you came out pretty good in the deal!

  4. Thanks, Barbara..I do hope I get to come to your area. It is so pretty there and it sounds as if you have potted up the whole town.