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Weaving Garden on Many Levels |Lydia Kendrick |Central Texas Gardener

November 4, 2019

In San Marcos, Lydia Kendrick weaves together a garden of many levels. She can see it all on a deck made by her husband Larry, former chief of police who drowned in 1997 in San Marcos River’s flooding waters. Since then she’s carried on the work they begun. The back yard was nothing but rocks and dirt and undergrowth you couldn’t see from the upper deck to anywhere along the fence line so we cleared it and and little by little it it’s changed over the years. The land literally just goes downhill from here. That used to mean flooding at the bottom with regrading, creative stonework, and a dry creek bed, standing water is no longer a problem. As Lydia reworked each area she discovered how to unite them with the color she loves. I, I learned to weave in 2009 I took some lessons up in Wimberley and I’ve never looked back. I’ve really fallen in love with this freeform style of weaving and I thought it would look beautiful outside I have an enormous amount of yarn in my house and I thought this is a great way to use that and be able to incorporate that in the garden. I’ve been told that Lydia will weave on anything that doesn’t move you know and with anything that feasible to weave with and that’s probably true statement. So I tend to collect things at garage sales that I can leave on, bed frames, I don’t know grills, there’s a child’s mattress frame on my upper deck that we move on one year. They had it at a garage sale for a few bucks, I said I don’t want the mattress, I just want the metal frame. Then she discovered plastic. I had some friends collect newspaper sleeves for me in every color that was available and I started weaving these panels with the plastic bags. They’ve lasted a lot longer a lot of them have faded just as quickly from the Sun but, but they don’t fall apart like the cotton and the other yarn that I’ve used outside. Lydia also weaves together the community. Each bring a piece of yarn or a piece of ribbon or anything that’s that shape a piece of rope doesn’t really matter wire and then I’ll have a loom ready outside, a weaving frame, I’ll put the strings on it and then everybody will put their piece in there at the end of this you have a piece of art you know that incorporates a little bit of every guest that was there. At the bottom of the garden she turned a former vegetable bed into her weaving garden fragment spring with star jasmine and Roses. I wanted to a place where the dogs couldn’t go that was just for me. I could go in there and sit and you know meditate or go in there and weave on the frame that’s in there and I thought while I was doing this I would remember Larry in some way and so I put a memorial in there. And I wanted roses, that was his favorite flower. Lydia strings prayer flags between destinations. I weave prayer flags too and give them away mine are called a wish and a prayer flag, and instead of it coming with a particular wish or prayer the person who gives it to somebody, that person can then say okay this is for a healthy baby or this is for healing, or whatever you fill in your own wish and prayer. The idea behind them is they carry the wishes and the good prayers with them as they fall apart and birds carry off little pieces of them it’s kind of a peace flag I guess, if you will. Lydia shares the garden with a rescue dog a boulder prompted a memorial to those she’s lost. I have cremated all my past dogs and have never known what to do with those it upsets me to go near the urns. but I thought, the shape I, I saw a paw print on the face of that rock it just lends itself to that shape and form and so I came out here a few weeks are going and painted the paw print on there hung a little prayer flag that’s especially for lost dogs, dogs who have passed and decided this is going to be my pet cemetery so now I know where to put those ashes. I think I’m finally ready and I think it will be a good place for that to happen. She rescues objects as well putting them to use and distinctive scenarios. The accents with pots that let her layer plant diversity. I like the interest, the art form of stacking, arranging pots and statues. When you look at the talavera pottery, I’ve tried to kind of stick with that because if it’s an ongoing theme. Some of the structures on the colorful pottery I think at least give you something else to look at besides just green. I had a woman make me some stepping stones, a local artist here in town from stained glass and that would go with those so that’s continuing that and and you can pull out any of the colors in that pottery and, and it just works. When temperatures hit the nineties she takes color to new heights with shade sails. I put up probably 15 to 20 shade sails altogether and it and it it takes me several days I don’t like to climb the ladder too much in one day, but I’ll put up two or three at once and then kind of see how they look and years ago there was a lot more Sun here and the the plants were smaller so it was relatively easy to put them up and just attach them to whatever I could. Now it’s a little more of a puzzle because I have to go over things, I have to kind of get them up higher and higher. Little ponds soothe heat and refresh wildlife. Every one of these has fish in it so that eliminates the mosquito problem as well. sensitive to water concerns Lydia’s conservative about that resource. She waters by hand with a hose in the hottest driest times when rain doesn’t build her bucket. I have about a thousand gallons of rainwater on the property and I I don’t have some really high tech collection system, I put buckets or containers under every gutter on the house and I just use that water and we put mosquito dunks in there and mosquito torpedoes to keep that down because I know that can be a problem. I’ve tried to make it so that I have water where I need it around the garden so I’m not bucketing from one corner all the way to the other because July, August, I spend about eight weeks bucketing all my plants with water. From big-time views to tucked in spots, Lydia has created discovery destinations right in her backyard. I like that there are lots of little places to hide out and and sit and people have told me that. We have a bench over here and and look at it from here and you can get amazing pictures from various corners of the yard and just sit and relax you know and see different things in every corner.


  • Reply T Green January 26, 2017 at 12:09 am

    A very beautiful garden that was built with love.

  • Reply FlowerLady Lorraine February 5, 2017 at 9:58 pm

    What a wonderful garden you have created, filled with love, color and memories. You are an inspiration to me. I'm into my 5th year of widowhood and love to garden and am surrounded by projects made by my husband, or that we did as a team. Your weavings are lovely.


  • Reply Melda Cano June 18, 2019 at 2:32 am

    Omgosh you have a beautiful garden. I'm inspired by your weaving and art. I think I'll crochet a few blankets and put them outside. That would be cozy during the fall. Thank you for sharing!

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