Regional Gardening Reports :: National Gardening Association

In the Garden:
June, 2004
Regional Report

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Marigolds can be pedestrian or sublime.

Restorative Gardening

When gardening turns into a chore, it's time to kick back and have some fun instead. Forget the weeds, they'll still be there tomorrow. Skip the trimming, it can wait one more week. And by all means instead of tedious deadheading, cut some flowers to bring inside or take to work or share with a neighbor. There will be more where these came from!

Sometimes we get wrapped up in creating a state of rigidly controlled perfection or trying to impose order where nature has other ideas, and we forget that the initial idea of a garden is -- or should be -- for pleasure. When we see only compulsive coulda-shoulda-woulda jobs, instead of rejoicing in what nature is providing, then we are missing out on the sheer joy and relaxation a garden can bring.

Remember When ...
Do you remember when you were a child, marveling at a ladybug or caterpillar or an anthill? How about mixing up potions of flower petals and berries? Or propelling rotten tomatoes and acorns with an assortment of improvised slingshots and levers? Jumping hopscotch-style from big rock to stump to rock and back? Climbing trees?

As an adult, when is the last time you sat still and listened and felt the garden humming and whistling and whirring around you? Smelled it just as rain began to fall or when the foggy morning mist lifted? Stood still long enough for a butterfly to graze your shoulder?

Walked barefoot? Sat on the ground? Smelled all the different flowers one by one? Chewed on fresh mint leaves? Slurped the first sun-warmed tomato?

I can hardly wait for that first tomato. Now that's beyond fun. For type A personalities like mine, having the earliest first tomato does double duty as bragging rights, too.

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