Jump to content

Farewell Tom DeBaggio


PollyG
 Share

Recommended Posts

Tom DeBaggio, known locally for his tremendous section of herbs and heirloom tomatoes, passed away yesterday. We started buying his plants when he was still using his backyard green house in the Clarendon area, and have been making annual trips to the Loudoun county farm in recent years, where his son has been running the business.

http://www.npr.org/2011/02/22/133971224/Alzheimers-Advocate-Thomas-DeBaggio-Dies

Link to comment
Share on other sites

He was a wonderful, amiable man, and I learned a lot from him back at that Clarendon greenhouse. His contributions to lovers of lavender and rosemary are beyond legendary. This spring when I start my new herb garden I will think of him and what a blessing he was, and plant lavender in his honor.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

While slogging home yesterday and seeing a nursery, I thought of DeBaggio's and pondered what we might get this year. It is always a treat to find something new to bring a splash of fragrant green to our modest backyard. I know that he had been ill for quite a while, so it was only a matter of time, however, it is a great loss to his family and anyone that had met him.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Tom DeBaggio, known locally for his tremendous section of herbs and heirloom tomatoes, passed away yesterday. We started buying his plants when he was still using his backyard green house in the Clarendon area, and have been making annual trips to the Loudoun county farm in recent years, where his son has been running the business.

http://www.npr.org/2011/02/22/133971224/Alzheimers-Advocate-Thomas-DeBaggio-Dies

I was just thinking of Tom, and son, and their greenhouses, today. There was an indescribable, undefinable freshness in the air, and I was thinking about planting tomatoes. Had to remind myself that it's just February.

And now he is dust. Not that being dust is such a bad thing for a gardener, in fact, it might be one of the best things. One could do a lot worse than become dust, or, no doubt, in Tom's case, a rich dark compost that crumbles cleanly and smells fresh and alive. So we go on . . . .

Fear no more the heat o’ the sun,

Nor the furious winter’s rages;

Thou thy worldly task hast done,

Home art gone, and ta’en thy wages; 332

Golden lads and girls all must,

As chimney-sweepers, come to dust.

Fear no more the frown o’ the great,

Thou art past the tyrant’s stroke: 336

Care no more to clothe and eat;

To thee the reed is as the oak:

The sceptre, learning, physic, must

All follow this, and come to dust. 340

Fear no more the lightning-flash,

Nor the all-dreaded thunder-stone;

Fear not slander, censure rash;

Thou hast finish’d joy and moan: 344

All lovers young, all lovers must

Consign to thee, and come to dust.

William Shakespeare (1564–1616). The Oxford Shakespeare. 1914.

Cymbeline

Act IV. Scene II.

http://www.bartleby.com/70/4642.html

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Tom DeBaggio, known locally for his tremendous section of herbs and heirloom tomatoes, passed away yesterday. We started buying his plants when he was still using his backyard green house in the Clarendon area, and have been making annual trips to the Loudoun county farm in recent years, where his son has been running the business.

http://www.npr.org/2011/02/22/133971224/Alzheimers-Advocate-Thomas-DeBaggio-Dies

I remember the days in the Arlington house backyard and the excitement of finding a parking space. I understand why they moved but it just "wasn't the same" afterward. What a man he was. I am sad today.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I remember the days in the Arlington house backyard and the excitement of finding a parking space. I understand why they moved but it just "wasn't the same" afterward. What a man he was. I am sad today.

If the family continues to operate the Loudoun greenhouses, you should give it a try. It's very lovely. But also, the plants that they sell are superior.

A few years ago I tried tomatoes from other places, many of which came down with viruses and blight. I ripped them all out and re-planted with DeBaggio tomatoes, none of which developed viruses or blight, all of them extremely productive, and also extremely delicious.

We also have several perennial herbs (lavender, thyme, even oregano) that have done quite well, even through long hard winters. They seem to be dead but are only dormant, and come back in the spring. We don't have quite as good luck with rosemary.

For a while, they had beehives, and the honey was the best I have ever tried. I hope that they do this again.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We make an annual trip to DiBaggio's to pick up herbs and veggies. Tom hasn't been there for years, but his son's doing well keeping the quality consistent. My heart goes out to the DiBaggio family, although I know Tom's been sick for many years. Perhaps it's a blessing.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We make an annual trip to DiBaggio's to pick up herbs and veggies. Tom hasn't been there for years, but his son's doing well keeping the quality consistent. My heart goes out to the DiBaggio family, although I know Tom's been sick for many years. Perhaps it's a blessing.

We saw Tom there until the last year or two, at least that is how I remember it. I am not good with remembering time. But I do remember his kindly presence. He was keeping his eye on things. He observed the herbs, and the flowers, and the sky. He was happy.

I think perhaps the last time I recall him there, for sure, was the last year they had honeybees. He was clearly observing the honeybees, and appreciating them. I remember thinking that Alzheimer's takes away memory but not personality, at least (maybe?) not until the end. If you are a kindly, observant person Alzheimer's won't take that away, at least not right away.

I wish my own memory was better. But him I won't forget.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you have a few minutes to honor Mr. DeBaggio, please watch these two videos of my hero, Sviatoslav Richter, in order, and remember: it's not how you died, but how you lived.

Chopin Scherzo Op 31 No 2 (ignore the Soviet propaganda; it's a legitimate live performance in front of a huge audience)

And then this:

Chopin Etude Op 25 No 11 (along with an interview, shortly before he passed away).

Have a good cry, my friends.

And Maestro, I love you enough for both of us - you are one of my single greatest influences in keeping this website going.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Got this in an email this morning:

End of Season

Super Sale

THIS WEEKEND ONLY!

FRIDAY, JUNE 29 THRU SUNDAY, JULY 1st

Hours and Directions

PLANTS, PLANTS, PLANTS

Colorful flowering annuals, herbs, perennials ...50% OFF!!!

Tomatoes, Peppers, Eggplants 50¢ each!!!

ALL Indoor/Outdoor Ceramic & Plastic Pots... 30% off

ALL Garden Seeds

From Seeds of Change and Renee’s Garden

40% off

ALL organic pest control products, fertilizers, etc. 25% off

ALL Books 25% off

Lepi de Provence Products 25% off

Hand Soaps, Liquid Soap, Shower Gel

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...