I was looking through my photographs, trying to decide what I would like to share with you, and found this one from 2003 from the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens. This hill was planted with daffodils in October of 2001 after 1.5 million bulbs were donated to New York City as a memorial to those lost in the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001.
The donations were made by Hans van Waardernburg, a Dutch bulb grower, and the Dutch Consulate, plus various other growers here and abroad, as a gift to the city. The idea was to provide something uplifting, a memorial to those who died that would endure over the years and remind us all, every year, of both the endurance and sacrifice of the people of New York City. Volunteers from all over came together in the fall to plant the thousands of bulbs throughout the city in parks and communities, and in the spring they bloomed. Still grieving, the people of the city were indeed uplifted and comforted by the sight of these bright yellow flowers appearing everywhere, along city streets, in boxes outside Fifth Avenue shops, and in the city’s many parks and gardens.
This photo is from a visit to BBG in 2003 with my son and his friend. I had moved out of the city by then, to Western Massachusetts where I live now. Coming back to BBG was definitely coming home to me. I had worked as a volunteer in the Herbarium for several years and loved watching the garden change with the seasons. Most people go for the festivals or events but working there gave me an opportunity to see it all through the winter and early spring before the visitors arrived. And what I saw was a garden that offered something new all year round, with grasses that turned into huge fans of white plumes along the frozen lily ponds, and mallard ducks that made their winter home there, sitting in that little bit of water in the otherwise frozen stream that flowed from the pond in the Japanese garden. If you visit this site often you will likely see more of the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens as I spent a lot of time taking pictures there. It is a true treasure.