I used to really hate gardening. I could kill a plant at 20 paces, just by looking at it. I used to joke that I had a brown thumb. It all just seemed like an enormous chore to me.
Then, at the beginning of this year, I went through a strange and rather complicated metamorphosis*, which saw me turn into SUPER NAKED GARDENER. I had a sudden urge to take my clothes off in the garden and plant things, often. Fortunately, I got really lucky with the costume. Gardening is a dirty business and a cape would just get in the way.
I’d heard people talk in whimsical and reverent tones about the wonders of working with the earth for most of my life, but my utter self absorption and short attention span never allowed me to truly discover the deep satisfaction that is to be had by sinking your hands into the dirt and nurturing a plant into bloom.
It’s true what they say. Gardening is a form of meditation. There is nothing else (with the possible exception of having an orgasm, oh and skinnydippng), that clears my mind in the same way, or takes me to such a simple place of pleasure and sheer enjoyment of life.
Ok, the pleasure principle is somewhat different between gardening and sex, but you get my drift, right?
I love planting. That’s my favourite part. I love mixing the different soils and mulch. I love digging my bare hands into the soil and letting the dirt fall through my fingers. I love popping the seedling out of the container to admire and gently free its delicate root structure. I love digging a little hole and placing the seedling, just so. I love giving them water and verbal encouragement daily. It matters not to me that they don’t have ears. They respond to my care.
These flowers are blossoming in my garden right now. I can’t take credit for them, for the plants were here when I moved in — but if you click on them you’ll see they are very pretty, indeed.
I have discovered my true love is growing edible plants. Flowers are nice, but there is nothing like eating food you have grown with your own loving care. This is a photo I took of some baby carrots I planted on 1 April.
And this is how they look today, 12 days later. The rapid growth is almost like instant gratification, with a lesson on patience thrown in for good measure. I can’t wait to see what’s below the surface!
I adore rocket. I could just munch on rocket leaves all day. This is my rocket 12 days ago…
And here it is today. Growing like a rocket, no less! Yummm….! I’m having salad tonight….
I’m so excited to taste these cherry tomatoes, I can barely stand it…. but they’re taking so long to turn red! I mean…. HOW MUCH LONGER?? There are around 20-30 of them in that pot and I’m loving that specific, pungent aroma of the tomato plant. It takes me back to my grandparent’s vegetable patch from childhood…
Jalapeno’s anyone? I love chillies, but I’m not sure what I’m going to do with this many of them. There are about 10 on that one plant right now and more popping up every day. I guess I can always freeze or dry them… Don’t you love that green?
This little fella makes me smile. Look at the way he’s climbing up the trellis all by himself. I thought I was going to have to tie him up, but it turns out he’s a very independent and capable little snow pea plant! If you look closely you can see 3 snow peas of varying sizes…
I’m also growing a lot of other things, like various herbs, red onions, and a lemon tree in a pot amongst other things — but we’d be here forever if I showed you them all. These are my star performers.
So, it seems I may have a green thumb, after all. Who knew? I think I was always going to have to be in a still and quiet place of personal transformation for the growth of a plant to become something I appreciate deeply. It’s quite symbolic.
I also love that when it’s warm, I can just turn around and dive in the pool to get clean.
It’s the simple things…
Now, I have a question for you:
I recently got hold of these rusty old buckets and I want to plant bulbs in them next week (jonquils, tulips and hyacinths). I’m really new at growing things and I don’t want to take any chances in terms of poisoning them, so I’m not keen on putting the soil directly in contact with the rust. Does anyone know of any product or method to coat the inside of the buckets to form a barrier between the metal and the soil? I’m thinking I might just have to line them with plastic….
I’d appreciate any ideas…
* My amazing metamorphosis may or may not be discussed at a later date. I’m a bit over talking about it for now.
Song Of The Day – Donovan – There Is A Mountain