my garden has been one important area of my life needing some attention lately
and why I didn't get out there earlier in this particular "down" cycle I don't know, given that i know how much better the process always makes me feel
it is so therapeutic
not just the mud and effort and sweat and dirty fingernails not just the colours and greens and textures and smells and buzzings and birdsongs and petals and leafy shoots
it soothes my spirit and speaks to me in unexpected ways.
Part of the therapy is unthinking absorption in the green and the growing and the dirt
- like being in another world. or just being out of the world for a while. or maybe out of myself, inThe world... hmmm...
Part of the therapy is a sort of earth wisdom which oozes its way gently in through some kind of osmosis.
- think about these aspects of my recent gardening as metaphors for living:
* my garden has been awash with forget-me-nots. They are finished now, needed to be cleared and if not cleared they tend get mildew. It is almost impossible (if thats what one wanted, which i don't) to remove them without their seed scattering, ready for next year's tidal wave of little blue loveliness. While other plants grow, flower and fruit during the summer, they'll be there dormant waiting for autumn and next spring.
* Taking out the forget-me-nots always creates so much space for other plants, and in the process I always discover some I had forgotten, and some I'd thought might not survive the winter. If I was a more regular and thorough gardener, I might sacrifice some of these unexpected (re-)discoveries. (my salvia uliginosa has survived the winter. I am very happy)
* Some plants are flourishing because I moved them to locations and next to other plants with which they are happier. Some plants hate to be moved and might never recover. On the other hand, some (such as larkspur) are happiest in recently disturbed ground. Go figure.
* I think I have given up on growing helenium in my garden. Much as I love it, it seems that my soil and situation just don't give it what it needs :o( Sometimes nature can't be persuaded.
* the crambe which I was given years ago - and which has been stamped on (repeatedly) (not by me) during fence-repairs, eaten by slugs and snails, neglected and forgotten about - is finally doing well, producing its massive umbrella leaves and might even flower this year. It had the persistence - just needed time to get going :o)
* I have no tadpoles this year. This makes me sad but my source of last year's frogspawn also has none this year. So I can't import any more, I will just have to wait for them to arrive as part of the natural cycle. Where there is water, there will be frogs - I just need to be patient.
* pruning. Some plants really wont flourish without it, they get leggy and ungainly and feeble and may even become bare, woody and dead on the inside, despite their leafy facade. Sometimes ruthlessness is needed.
* the all-engulfing too-vociferous tree ivy which was constantly threatening to engulf the fence at the end of my garden - the fence and my girl-shed and some cherished plants - is finally close to being defeated. This is because new neighbours on the other side of the fence are also trying to control or uproot it. It was a problem which really needed to be addressed on both sides.
Sometimes its just too much bloody wisdom all at once and then I have to come and sit at my computer for a while, surrounded by technology....