His name is Norman. He is the benevolent guardian of our vegetable garden. It is important one shares your garden with those of like minds. This growing of vegetables is a journey. The digging and turning of black, rich soil. Hoeing and raking again and again. The quiet contemplation as rows are staked and marked. The planting and nurturing of seedlings. This is the quiet joy. The happiness. This process. This is why we garden. Not just for the harvest but the simple doing of it.

Norman, gentleman scarecrow is elegantly dressed. Gloriously attired in a black blazer. His straw bow tie adorned with a diamond stick pin. Norman is thoughtfully and caring. Look closely you’ll see he is respectfully wearing a tiny orange poppy.

Obviously this is no ordinary run of the farm scarecrow. I have intriguing conversations with my garden sentinel. My discussions are are mostly about books. I sometimes bring a book out to the garden and read aloud. Norman tells me he hasn’t much of a brain but he does make gnomic comments about my choice of literature. And one day I heard him quote Lewis Carroll “the time has come”, the walrus said, “to talk of many things: of ships – and sealing wax – and cabbages and kings”.

I watch Norman from my kitchen window. There’s a gentle breeze blowing from the river. It is lifting the brim of his straw hat. There are beets and broccoli growing at his feet.

. Bright orange Calendula flowers have escaped from the butterfly-bee garden and are strolling through the the rows of onion. Nasturtiums are jealously trying to join them. Tomatoes, snug in their plastic palace, are reaching for the sky.

Norman would like you to come into the garden.



  1. What a gorgeous garden you’ve created. And that dapper Norman! I love his face, and the stick pin. I’m sure even the gentleman rabbit will respect his dashing attire. Hope you fared OK in the recent heat wave up there. Take care and enjoy your harvest!

    • Dearest Gayle, I was over the moon when I put Norman together. I used an old, falling apart dress form for his body and then I was away to the races. I wanted him to be hind the kind of scarecrow from the Wizard of Oz – just better dressed. I even borrowed a couple of lines from the movie.
      The heat was really extreme. I didn’t leave the house at all for 3-4 days. We live close to the Fraser River so we had a cool breeze and that helped. Very few homes are air conditioned here as we have a temperate climate. But not any more.
      And yes Oswald and Norman are good friends. Although Oswald thought the diamond stick pin was perhaps a bit much. But then Oswald is such a conservative rabbit.
      XXXX Virginia

    • I am quite enamoured with Norman, dear Janet. I thought a lot about making a scarecrow and the one in the Wizard of Oz became my inspiration. He was such a lovely, charming, beautifully mannered scarecrow. I just needed to ditch the shabby clothes and give my scarecrow some major. style. Norman and Oswald Rabbit have a great deal in common. XXXX Virginia

  2. Norman is a wonder, a mindful guardian of calendula, nasturtiums and many other good things. His style is impeccable. Would that he had a brother to grace my vegetable beds keeping the wild things at bay.

  3. Norman was thrilled you think his is style is impeccable. He is quite opinionated about a few things. One of course is the fashion sense of other scarecrows. The other is the importance of combining flowers and vegetables in the garden. He likes that he can wear a fresh boutonniere everyday. He is extremely happy these days. I am reading out loud to him: The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe.It’s going to be a long summer. Cheers Virginia P.S. Norman says he has a cousin but he lives in Saskatchewan. and he is afraid of water.

  4. LOL! Adore this post.
    My man’s name is Norman. He just discovered the joys of gardening a few years ago. We have a postage stamp of a yard, but his tomato and herb harvests are plentiful.
    The joy of gardening is upon us! XXOXOXO

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