|once upon a time
The trouble with my gardening, ..oh let’s admit it.. my whole life, is how widely interested, and thus shallowly engaged, I am with so many things. The only thing that gave me depth in my knowledge and experience of gardening has been two factors. I had no money, and having a lot of kids to raise meant I had to find something around the home that kept me sane. Gardening served on all counts.
But now that my life includes more travel (anything is more compared to those past childraising, no-money years), and the internet providing all sorts of new options for my mind to engage, I find gardening is taking a back seat. Not that I want it that way, because I have come to love gardening for many more reasons than its calming effect on my mental health. I love the environment it can provide, the science of it, and the art of it… as well as its spiritual aspects. Yet, the practice of it has languished.
This year, I sorrowfully mowed down my main flower border. At its height of glory it had been the culmination of carefully planned color harmonies and seasonal interest. Billows and twinings, spires and mounds, rich scent and subtle texture, all were found in my mixed perennial garden, now faded in memory like the shades of a Greek tragedy.
I will spend many hours this winter planning the future of my garden’s direction. Besides less time for it, I must face real restraints on the work I exact from this body, now looking back at the half century mark. It isn’t that aging forbears working in a garden, but that it requires less distractions of time and energy to accomplish it. A Dilettante’s crisis of indecision, and the inevitable prioritizing of interests.