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Gardening during quarantine? Get some inspiration from master horticulturist Eudora Welty.

Aaron Robertson

May 29, 2020, 12:59pm

Did you know that Eudora Welty was probably a better gardener than you?

It’s true. In addition to being a fantastic photographer and storyteller, Welty was known for her green thumb. The revamped website of the Eudora Welty House and Garden opens the author’s botanical garden in Jackson, Mississippi to any natural beauty-starved online visitors.

If you’ve abandoned quarantine bread-making for a gardening habit, Welty sets a fine example. To be fair, Welty had a huge advantage in her mother and gardening partner, Chestina, who designed their garden in 1925.

Mother and daughter spent the next 20 years working the plot together, and across Eudora’s own writing you can find more than 150 references to specific plants. (Visitors to the House and Garden, which re-opens next month, can access Chestina’s in-depth garden journals).

A “bloom calendar” on the website shows the seasonal rotation of flora. As we enter summer, we can imagine what Welty herself would’ve been excited about: spotted tiger lilies and pink rain lilies, zinnias, tea roses, and the delightfully named four o’clocks.

Wetly’s garden is a small, refreshing gift to appreciate as we enter June. I haven’t entered my gardening phase yet, but at least now I have a model.

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