I’m sharing some thoughts at The Glorious Table today. Join me?
I planted my first garden this year. It’s just a tiny plot, a four-foot-by-four-foot raised bed. There’s a tomato plant in the center, surrounded by peppers, summer squash, a watermelon (which I pray won’t blossom until the vine gets long enough that it extends past the bed), a green bean plant, and a cucumber. There’s an herb in each corner, bright flowers on three sides, and a row of lettuce and spinach sown along the fourth. It’s packed full, this little oasis of land.
My husband built the frame for me, lining the bottom with pieces of cardboard to keep the grass and weeds out, and I lovingly emptied five big bags of organic garden soil into it, smoothing it all out with my daughter’s new child-size shovel. I water it faithfully every evening, the way my mom taught me. You don’t water a garden in midday or the sun reflecting on the water droplets can scorch the plants, much like a child at the swimming pool whose sunscreen has worn off.
Daily, I’m amazed at the progress of my little plot of earth. In under three weeks, my tomato has more than quadrupled in height, reaching the top of its little cage and bursting with yellow blossoms. Tiny lettuce leaves, sown directly from seeds I tenderly pushed into that fresh soil on planting day, have popped up along one side and double in circumference every few days. The brilliant petunias and zinnias, and my daughter’s choice of bright yellow French marigolds, shed their blossoms and send forth new ones almost daily in a steady rhythm. I can’t quite get my mind wrapped around how fast it all happens.
My five-year-old, on the other hand, asks me daily why it’s taking so long for anything edible to appear. Patiently, I walk her through the growing process, pointing out the blossoms that will eventually be replaced by vegetables, trying to explain that cultivating life takes time and care.
Cultivating life takes time and care.
To read the rest, please click on over to The Glorious Table. See you there!
Photograph © Bethany Beams, used with permission