A Book-inspired Garden
by Susan F. Craft
I’m creating an “Author’s Garden” in my yard in honor of my Xanthakos Family Trilogy comprised of The Chamomile, Laurel, and Cassia. These inspirational historical romantic suspense novels span from 1780 to 1836 and from the Blue Ridge Mountains, to Charleston, SC, and to the NC Outer Banks.
So far, I’ve planted six chamomiles (none of which lived), three laurel bushes (two of which lived), and four cassia trees (none of which lived). The cassia trees didn’t survive because I live in the wrong area. If I lived in Florida, they would be okay. I’ve put on my thinking cap to find a way to represent cassias in the garden. The other plants died because I am not a great gardener.
When they bloom, chamomile flowers look like daisies, except the yellow centers are cone-shaped instead of flat. When you walk through them, they give off an aroma of apples. I’m planting a new set of chamomiles next week and am hoping for a better outcome. The mountain laurels will have pink blossoms and glossy dark green leaves.
Cassias have brilliant yellow, cascading blooms and reach about ten feet tall. Cassia, the “poor man’s cinnamon,” is mentioned in the Bible several times as one of the ingredients of anointing oil. According to Psalm 45:8, when the Messiah returns, his robes will smell of cassia. (All your robes are fragrant with myrrh and aloes and cassia; from palaces adorned with ivory the music of the strings makes you glad. NIV). I’m going to start searching for a garden sculpture that might represent cassia.
I searched for a long time before I found just the right garden sculpture. It’s a little girl reading, and the pages say “Happy Garden.” Recently, my grand-daughter made these lovely book brick sculptures to add to my garden. I love to sit on the bench in the evenings and listen to the birds and feel the gentle breeze on my face. Usually, our dog, Steeler, curls up on the grass in between my feet. It is the perfect place to daydream about my next novel.
About the Author:
Susan F. Craft writes inspirational historical romantic suspense. Her Xanthakos Family Trilogy includes her Revolutionary War novel, The Chamomile, which won the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance Okra Pick (re-released April 2015) and which is nominated for a 2016 Christy Award; its sequel, Laurel (released in January 2015); and the third in the trilogy, Cassia, (released in September 2015), which is also nominated for a 2016 Christy Award. Her publisher is Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas (LPC), and her literary agent is Linda Glaz of Hartline Literary Agency. To assist authors to “get it right about horses in their works,” Susan worked with the International Long Riders’ Guild Academic Foundation to compile A Writer’s Guide to Horses.
She recently retired after a 45-year career as a communications director, editor, and proofreader. Forty-six years ago, she married her high school sweetheart, and they have two adult children, one granddaughter, and a granddog. An admitted history nerd, she enjoys researching for her novels, painting, singing, listening to music, and sitting on her porch watching the rabbits and geese eat her daylilies. You can connect with Susan at her blog.