Thursday, March 6, 2014
Gardening For a Lifetime
As we age...we just can't do what we once could do. We have to find different ways and methods. This morning I was reading the chapter on Accepting Imperfection. When my daughter was in about 1st or 2nd grade....she would draw or write something on a piece of paper...if it wasn't just so....she crumbled it up and tossed it in the trash. She changed later on when she couldn't keep up with the class. So many gardeners are perfectionists. They want tidy rows, no weeds, perfect deadheaded blooms. I was sort of like that at one time. Then cottage gardening became so popular, and I learned to love the way flowers blended together in a casual way. I, like the author, learned to go with the flow. Sometimes we blame gardening for wearing us out....when the real culprit is life. We live in such a busy world...there isn't really time for everything.We say, "I just get so tired working in the garden." Maybe if we lowered our standards and let go of other chores...we'd have an easier time.
The author speaks of woodlands. She says that mature trees that have completed their life cycle... start to lean on their neighbors. Sometimes, like in my woods...a few are held up by younger trees or fall to the ground. Then the canopy is different, letting in light for the first time in years. Other things start growing, small saplings, wild flowers...feeding off the dead tree.
Her ideas about fall cleanup are interesting too. She rakes the leaves into the ornamentals around the house and also the garden....Eventually these break down and nourish the plants.I've done this for a long time. Instead of clearing the beds completely...I leave some dried material there for winter protection.
I'll keep reading this book and taking notes. As someone said....just let nature take it's course...and learn to go with the flow.