Something different: garden message

One of the things I like most about having a blog is that it introduces me to lots of like-minded people: experienced gardeners, beginners, plant-lovers, bamboo growers, and sometimes companies. Yes, marketing departments sometimes find me and request that I take a look at some product or another and post about it. My criteria for this type of "opportunity" is that it really must be something that I'm excited about and would actually use in my garden. If not, I politely decline the offer -- which is what almost always happens.

That was my first thought early last week when I got an email from Jeremy at Adirondack Stone Works, and I was ready to compose my standard "no thank you" email, when I realized a few things.


First, this was not some bulk email blast that I received -- it was a custom email written for me. Second, it made specific reference to a main feature of my garden (my bamboo) and offered a brief recount of childhood bamboo plants. Shared experiences are such a great way of connecting with people, aren't they?

As you may have guessed, the product Jeremy was offering to me was a custom-engraved garden stone. You've probably seen them before, nice stones engraved with some happy thought or a name. My initial reaction was "this is not my style". I don't typically like this type of thing in my garden: little figurines, manufactured stepping stones, gazing balls -- it's just not me. I certainly didn't relish the thought of having a stone offering generic messages like "Peace" or "Find Tranquility", or stating ownership like "Alan's Garden", or even "It's not work, it's gardening!"

I tried to think of something that would fit my style, be poetic or maybe funny. "Soil is everything", "Grow Something!", "Look Closely, You'll Be Amazed" -- it just wasn't happening for me. So I started composing my "thanks, but no thanks" reply to Jeremy. That's when I reread the phrase he had used in his email: " your urban bamboo garden..." and inspiration struck! I had to take advantage of this offer.

So a week later the heaviest Priority Mail box I've ever received showed up on my porch. The postal workers in Jeremy's town must be pretty Hulked up moving these things around every day. 

Out of the box it appeared to be an amazingly dense wad of brown paper:

But of course it contained a wonderful chunk of bluestone:

This is natural stone, not manufactured, and is about 2" (5cm) thick. 

Lucky that I happened to have it face down when I opened it, as it adds to the anticipation of what saying I chose to display in my garden...

"Please report all panda sightings immediately!" is something I never think to say to my visitors, but it's surely something I want them to know. Now this message will become just another fun discovery for them in my garden!

Although they have standard graphics that you can choose from, they'll also work with you to find a custom graphic -- like this panda, which surprisingly, nobody else had requested before. (They also do pet memorial stones.)

Tavia informed me that they don't charge extra for this, nor do they charge extra for the custom wording, even if you have an especially long message. They'll email you a mock up of what the stone will look like if there's any doubt as to how it should be laid out.

This is a small, family-owned business, and they are so easy to work with. Thanks to Jeremy and Tavia at Adirondack Stone Works  for getting in touch with me and providing a wonderful garden accent piece!

I'm looking forward to getting this placed in the garden near some bamboo...

...I only hope that I have some left after this winter! (It's not supposed to look like this!)

I was not paid for writing this post, but I did receive the panda stone free of charge.


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Kris Peterson  – (January 15, 2014 at 11:48 AM)  

Pretty clever! I'm sure that'll give your garden visitors a chuckle.

Gerhard Bock (Succulents and More)  – (January 15, 2014 at 1:01 PM)  

This made me laugh! What a good message. And the bluestone itself it pretty darn magnificent.

VirginiaC  – (January 15, 2014 at 5:45 PM)  

Golly that is a cute stone....
I cut/culled my dwarf bamboo back a week ago, and there is definitely space for a stone now...I am thinking of making a hypertufa one.
I have added your blog to my Blog roll...hope you don't mind.

Anonymous –   – (January 16, 2014 at 6:26 AM)  

Thanks for a good laugh on an early Thursday morning

Alan  – (January 16, 2014 at 7:18 AM)  

Thanks everyone! I'm glad this works with those not obsessed with bamboo -- I had some doubts after ordering it. :)

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