A July flower blooms in a Cambridgeport yard. (Photo: Rekha6 via Flickr)

Dear flower thief,

Happy summer! This must be your favorite time of year, when the efforts of avid gardeners culminate in a splendid selection of blooms. The true gardener understands the year-round dedication it takes for that two-week reward from that single perfect flower that will soon swap places with the next. The hours of planning, weeding, composting, planting, watering, trimming and inspecting doesn’t necessarily guarantee textbook results, but when it happens it is uplifting. Neighbors thank you and visitors snap pictures, which is validation in itself. So when one goes to gaze on a favorite blossom and it is gone because of outright theft, one can’t help but feel violated.

For the past several years, the first to go have been unusual color irises. This year, 30 carefully placed and orchestrated tulips and a rare single spider-like fritillaria (look it up) were cut; it took six bulbs and three years to finally produce this spectacular flower. Now, two 4- and 5- foot enormous orange and yellow Easter lilies have disappeared. You cut the rest of the white hydrangeas you didn’t finish off first time around.

This display of a Victorian garden complementing a historic building brings pleasure to all that see it. Now the police have a case number. Why do you feel entitled to trespass, vandalize and steal the product of someone’s hard work and financial investment? And don’t tell me it’s because “they are perennials, they will grow back next year,” as someone once told me. Why should gardeners have to start over for their reward?

Gardeners use their plots as therapy; to create beauty; to upgrade property values; to bring enjoyment to others; to otherwise find peace in a scary world. Please check your arrogance from depriving others of the pleasure of the season’s offerings. 

Stop stealing other people’s flowers.

Marilee Meyer, Dana Street