Gardening is a passion of mine – not only because it’s wonderful to be outside, work the earth with your hands, reap the benefits of a beautiful organic garden for edibles and simple beauty. I also garden for wildlife and creating a restorative habitat on my little lot of land – pollinators, birds, amphibians, and mammals frequenting our yard – but also my own sort of mindfulness and recovery.
My yard wasn’t always a haven of organic gardening bliss. I have slowly dug up the sea of grass and amended the soil – replacing it with compost, mulch, and many plants I’ve picked up from nurseries, fellow gardeners, and friends. I’ve divided many of the plants already present and given them new life – shared divisions with the many gardeners who attend our Green Elephants.
I had no idea why anyone would give away Shasta Daisies – they are so brilliant! However, I now see — after years of failed attempts with nursery Daisies – how naturalized divisions from fellow gardeners can thrive when transplanted in your own yard!
I think about that a lot: not only with gardening, but with writing, how it benefits to have a community of like-minded individuals. I suppose you can say it’s really true of any interest, but passing on what you’ve learned, gleaned, and simplified in your own home, mind, or practice, grows abundantly when given freely and shared.
You can see what a difference just a few months makes to a garden – from March 2017 to July 2017, with regular tending and love, a garden grows and changes the scenery. I made tweaks with plantings, even transplanted a few last month – which is generally much too late – but it’s coming together. I’m learning, fostering my interests, intertwining them into my days, my weeks, my year. I do it for myself, but I also love to share and collaborate with others.
However, I’m not always as loving to my lovely garden. I get busy, harried. I forget to prune, water, weed. I really haven’t fertilized my garden this year beyond adding compost and yet – it continues on. My writing, blogging, and even in-real-life-friends have been neglected in this season of change for me – yet I’m ever-grateful when those true friends, in the trenches with me, are there for me when I do come up for air. Homeschoolers, Public Schoolers; mothers, fathers, friends, family; writing community, gardeners, church family, neighbors…I’m thankful.
Front and Side Yards, Bikurgurl 2015
Notice the abundant pumpkin vines growing in front – we can so much fun growing our own!
To those who came before me in my gardening, I humbly thank you. In my writing, homeschool, and communities beyond, I am privileged to be a part of growing beauty in all our gardens. You are valued, you are important: You are part of my community.