I celebrated my 59th birthday this week on Tuesday, February 11th. Michelle planned a wonderful, relaxing weekend in Seattle to stretch out the celebration. One of the things we did was to visit Stuart Kendall at Seattle Solstice to see the AMAZING sculpture he is creating for Little Prince to use in our crevice garden at the Northwest Flower and Garden Show coming up February 26th– March 1st at the Washington Convention Center in Seattle. It’s a truly extraordinary piece of art that I’m so honored to display in our garden. The stone is an exquisite piece of green jade standing about 5 feet tall and weighing tons. As we stood looking at the stone and the massive saw that will cut it to create the unique piece, I contemplated its ancient, no primeval origin, likely billions of years old. I imagined its history and all the geologic cataclysms that gave it its shape and placed it in a position where humans first interacted with it. History became legend, legend became myth, and for eons it waited, biding its time. It came to Stuart Kendall decades ago and sat waiting on a pallet outside Seattle Solstice until it attracted the attention of the unlikeliest of creatures, the Crowned Frog from Little Prince!
The timeless nature of the stone prompted Stuart to talk about his involvement with the Long Now Foundation, which was established in 01996 (even the numeration suggests longevity) to develop the 10,000- Year Clock and Rosetta projects as well as become the seed of a VERY long-term cultural institution. The Long Now Foundation hopes to provide a counterpoint to today’s accelerating culture and help make long-term thinking more common. Stuart pointed out that even the skyscrapers in the downtown areas of the world’s cities are not designed or meant to last more than 50 years. He stressed that humans are building nothing with any enduring capacity. If the Egyptians could make buildings that have lasted some 5000 years, what are we now so short-sighted? Will human civilization still exist in 10,000 years? Who knows, but the goal of the Long Now Foundation is to ensure that even after 10,000 years, there will be function artifacts left for whoever or whatever finds them. I’m just hoping it’s not the Romulans or Klingons. Anyway, follow the links to the Long Now Foundation. I think you’ll find them fascinating.
At Little Prince, we are always looking to the future, though I must say that our 10,000-year goals need a little refinement. We talk all the time about where we want to be in 5 years. It’s challenging to consider the “long now” for a nursery, but it’s absolutely worth the time spent to have a strategic plan for the next year, decade, and beyond.
In the Short Now, we have oodles of beautiful plants available now. Please look through our availability and place your orders. Plants from our FIT FOR A KING™ brand, FOOT TRAFFIC PERENNIALS, and CLIFF HANGERS and WATER MISERS® will be featured in our crevice garden at the Flower Show in 10 short days. Over 70,000 people will see them and be looking for them in Pacific Northwest garden centers. It would be short-sighted and unwise to be unprepared for these intrepid gardeners.
Have a wonderful millennium!