Saturday was the 65th anniversary of the invasion of Normandy. It was also the 9th anniversary of the death of a very dear friend of ours, Bill Pulda from Cedar Rapids.
Most of the time he looked like this:
He served as a Seabee in World War II but spent his tour in the Pacific. Dwayne met Bill while working at WMT and became fast fishing buddies. Bill had a knack with plants. He could take a plant that was all dried out at the end of the plant selling season from a local store and it would be huge within a month. His garden is probably the reason we have one now. Ours will never be the same as Bill’s, but we will sure enjoy trying to get our plants to grow like his.
When Bill got sick, we had just moved back to the area from Sioux Falls. We were renting a place in Waterloo and didn’t really have a very large yard. Bill died in June and his wife, Clara, graciously let us dig up some of his flowers later in the year. We dug up roses, irises and some of his strawberry plants. Unfortunately, we didn’t really have a good place to put any of them. We wrapped everything up and put them all in the garage for the winter. That fall, Dwayne got a job in Cedar Rapids and we had to move. We moved to Urbana on Christmas Eve. Not a very good time to be planting. As soon as spring came around we stuck everything in the ground. And everything grew! Bill was still with us!
The strawberries have taken over the area we put them in.
The irises have been moved a couple of times and they looked the best they have ever looked this year.
And the roses are incredible this year. Almost every year we have a lot of flowers, but this year the canes are loaded with the sweetest smelling flowers.
We don’t have any idea what kind of roses these are. We thought they may be climbing roses, since Bill had them on an arbor, but when we put them on a trellis they kept breaking every time a storm went through or even a strong breeze. We took the trellis away and they grow just fine. They could be shrub roses, but they don’t seem to be as bushy as a shrub rose. They are too leggy. Of course, it really doesn’t matter to us. When you ask, we will tell you that they are Bill’s Roses!