A coda to watering the Melba

In May, I wrote about our Ottawa family planting a Melba apple tree in their yard.

watering the melba

The entry ended this way:

The younger man in the photograph is my grandson, who is two, the same age his father was when we brought home our Melba. In “Ballast”, in Euclid’s Orchard, I wrote, “I’m interested in how plants travel, how they are carried to new places, how they are botanical palimpsests, in a way. And how they hold stories,some plain and true, and some cryptic.” The first thing I thought of when I woke this morning was the Melba in Ottawa, newly planted, newly watered, with a young family to care for it (another grandson is anticipated in July) and to enjoy its beautiful fruit.


And now, in early August, some photos arrived of my grandson picking apples! His brother was born a month ago and the season is turning just a little—our heat wave has broken and the lake this morning was cooler than it’s been for weeks—so it’s a good time to eat apples from a tree planted in memory of an earlier tree, now gone. And good to sit at my desk and look at the image while my Edmonton grandchildren shout and play in the other rooms. They have been helping me water the tomatoes, the basil, the lilies on the upper deck, and later we’ll go out to see if the Merton Beauties are ripe enough to pick.


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