Teena is a lady of many and varied interest, of course gardening, but also traveling, photography, and sampling the cuisine of local restaurants. We agreed to meet at Memory Park in Montgomery at 3:00 pm for a photo walk and then do this interview. And, yes it was hot, maybe not the best time of day to go for a walk.
After the photo walk, we got down to the serious business of the interview over a glass of iced tea at Uncle Bob’s BBQ restaurant.
Teena and her husband JR are a classic example of love at first sight. They first meet in the summer of 1967 and were married four months later. She jokingly quipped the secret of her soon to be 48 years of marriage was that she did all the outside gardening and JR did all the cooking!
Beginning the master gardener program in 2015, her love of gardening actually developed early as a child when she used to spend time working in the garden with her dad. She found joy in doing the simple tasks of gardening with her dad; planting, weeding and even mowing – tasks she continues to enjoy today; with the possible exception of weeding!
Asked about her favorite plants, she quickly quipped, “Anything deer resistant!” Teena commented that there weren’t really any plants she didn’t like. She noted that many people had a plant or group of plants that they really didn’t care for, but she didn’t feel that way. When pressed she admitted that she favored crepe myrtles and her Ligularia, commonly known as a Leopard plant.
We got a little off track when she started telling me about her house. It seems it was built around a theme of threes: three car garage, three stories, three fireplaces, three islands in the kitchen. Teena listed a few more threes, but my mind couldn’t get past the three islands in the kitchen so the note taking got off and I couldn’t remember the others.
Teena and JR traveled extensively; New Zealand, Australia, Hawaii, Alaska, Europe and probably other places we just didn’t get into. Her favorite travel location is Venice, Italy. I mentioned it was my least favorite place in Italy, so we had a discussion of the pros and cons of being a tourist in Venice. It ended with neither of us changing our minds.
An avid photographer, Teena’s camera of choice is the iPhone. She currently has more than 28,000 pictures on her camera! She obviously has a defective camera; it apparently lacks a ‘Delete’ function! Favorite things to photograph include sunsets on Lake Conroe and nature shots. Teena says she’s improved her technical skills after taking an iPhone Photography class offered by the Master Gardener’s program.
We finished our day with Teena giving me a driving tour of Walden looking for deer; she wanted to get pictures of Bambi! Saw lots of deer and, yes, she got her pictures.
Teena is a fun and interesting lady, and I was glad to get the chance renew an old friendship and get to know her better.