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July in the Gardens of Hope

July in the Gardens of Hope

Gardens are “an expression of faith” and “the embodiment of hope,” wrote the revered English landscape architect Russell Page in his memoir, “The Education of a Gardener,” in 1962.

 Landscape, designed or wild, facilitates human health and well-being.

If you thought of your life as a garden, what areas could use a little more watering? Weeding?

Solitude is the garden for our hearts, which yearn for love. It is the place where our aloneness can bear fruit. It is the home for our restless bodies and anxious minds. Solitude, whether it is connected with a physical space or not, is essential for our spiritual lives. Henri Nouwen 

"That beautiful season the Summer!
Filled was the air with a dreamy and magical light;
and the landscape
Lay as if new created in all the freshness of childhood."
-   Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

"There is no season such delight can bring,
As summer, autumn, winter and the spring."
-   William Browne, Variety, 1630  

"Oh, the summer night
Has a smile of light
And she sits on a sapphire throne."
-   Barry Cornwall  

O, money can't buy the delights of the glen,
Nor Poetry sing all its charms:
There's a solace and calm ne'er described by the pen
When we're folded within Nature's arms!
~James Rigg, "Nutting Time," Wild Flower Lyrics and Other Poems, 1897




A man found a cocoon of a butterfly. One day a small opening appeared. He sat and watched the butterfly for several hours as it struggled to force its body through that little hole. Until it suddenly stopped making any progress and looked like it was stuck.
So the man decided to help the butterfly. He took a pair of scissors and snipped off the remaining bit of the cocoon. The butterfly then emerged easily, although it had a swollen body and small, shrivelled wings.
The man didn’t think anything of it and sat there waiting for the wings to enlarge to support the butterfly. But that didn’t happen. The butterfly spent the rest of its life unable to fly, crawling around with tiny wings and a swollen body.
Despite the kind heart of the man, he didn’t understand that the restricting cocoon and the struggle needed by the butterfly to get itself through the small opening; were God’s way of forcing fluid from the body of the butterfly into its wings. To prepare itself for flying once it was out of the cocoon.
Moral of the story: Our struggles in life develop our strengths. Without struggles, we never grow and never get stronger, so it’s important for us to tackle challenges on our own, and not be relying on help from others.
With Love from Prince Edward Island, 
Previous article Welcoming November in the Gardens of Hope
Next article Summer in the Gardens of Hope


Marilyn - August 4, 2019

Life has been busy, so today I am filling up on past blogs. Beautiful pictures and an inspirational PS! Thank you.

Lynn - July 29, 2019

Lovely! Thank you for the “lift.”

Paul Kneebone (Whitby, ON) - July 28, 2019

Bruce, you were kind enough to spend a couple minutes chatting with me when our family visited your shop a couple weeks ago. I thanked you for your weekly blog and how positive & uplifting I found your thoughtful content. Per usual on our almost annual visits, we bought more lovely jams (strawberry & rhubarb is my new favourite); enjoyed the restaurant and toured your inspirational gardens and butterfly house. Our two granddaughters were enthralled in your butterfly house! The youngest (9) wore her special butterfly dress for the occasion! All the very best in all your pursuits and to your family.

Mikel & Kay Stevenson - July 28, 2019

Thank you, Bruce, as always for your uplifting blogs. The flowers and the sayings with them
are, indeed, inspiring. Fitting, it seems, to refer to the Garden of Hope.

Una mary Hingston - July 28, 2019

Beautiful gardens

Elaine - July 27, 2019

Thank you for the beautiful pictures, beautiful beyond description! Perhaps the moral of the above story has several layers. Yes, struggles make us strong and we grow and it is important to tackle challenges on our own. But, as the age old saying goes, “no man is an island, no man stands alone”. When we are struggling physically, mentally, emotionally or spiritually and are doing all we can to overcome the problem or challenges, there is renewed strength and determination when someone comes along side of us and walks even a few steps with us on the journey. You and your loving wife do that for many, many people in providing the Garden of Hope. God often uses others to strengthen and encourage us. May we always we aware and alert to the doors God opens for us to be there for someone struggling. Just like the butterfly we have to do all we can to help ourselves but praise God for people who allow us to go through the tough times and are close by waiting and watching to see how God can use them to help. People need people…..butterflies not so much :o).

Susan Mayo - July 27, 2019

Beautiful photos. Thank you for sharing the Butterfly 🦋 story. This is a beautiful illustration of our struggles turning to our strength. Isn’t God an amazing Miracle Maker? Blessings, Susan

MURDOCK MORRISON - July 27, 2019

Bruce just a beautiful collage of colors that we love and a joy to see grow. This is a keeper for sure. Murdock

Geri - July 27, 2019

Beautiful, Bruce…the gardens are truly a gift from God…

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