I spent a few days in March and April soaking up history in the warming spring weather at Historic Oakland Cemetery in Atlanta. I walked and talked with historian and horticulturist Abra Lee, author of “Conquer the Soil: Black America and the Untold Stories of Our Country’s Gardeners, Farmers, and Growers” (publishes in 2023). See the pictures from my Oakland Cemetery tour, then read my interview with Abra.
Historic Oakland Cemetery Camera Roll
These are my favorite images from March and April 2022 at the cemetery. Apologies for the lack of details about the monuments and, in some cases, the plants. Oakland is 48 acres big and has 70,000 “residents.” If you’re in Atlanta, I recommend the cemetery tours to get an overview of the park. Learn more about Historic Oakland Cemetery.
Red camellias symbolize love and passion.
Daffodils symbolize new beginnings, appropriate for one of the first flowers to emerge in later winter and early spring.
Gone, but not forgotten
Iris, to guide souls to heaven
It’s said that purple iris are planted over the graves of women to summon the goddess Iris to guide their souls to heaven.
Violets have many meanings in the language of flowers, from innocence to wisdom, but remembrance seems appropriate for a cemetery flower.
Camellia, to close
Thank You for Joining Me
on my springtime walkabout in Oakland Cemetery. This is one of my Garden Trippers stories, where I explore public and private gardens.