Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Gardening like God does, Part IV

I love rainy days, though they're not the best for running around my yard taking pictures. I'm pretty wet at the moment... but I wanted to show you all the lovely things happening outside.

If you've been following my moodlings for a while, you'll know that I've moved from being a wanna-be tidy gardener with things planted in orderly rows and beds, to gardening like God does. In other words, I've turned too much of my yard into garden and I don't have enough time to whip it all into perfect organization... nor do I feel that neatness is necessary any more. What I have realized is that God doesn't plant things in tidy rows and beds, or grow perfect green rectangles of lawn without weeds, or worry about last year's left-over organic materials (read: natural mulch) strewn around plants and under bushes. She and He just lets the seeds fall where they may, and rejoices when they bloom. So that's what I'm doing, and I must admit that it makes me happier than worrying when something isn't planted in the right place. Since I was small, I was told to bloom where I'm planted, and I'm adopting the same principle for my garden.

Oh, I pull weeds, alright. I have TONS of little elm seeds, dandelions, and creeping charlies, plus I've noticed that clover, daisies, delphiniums and other things need to be pulled up all the time to make space for the stuff that wouldn't otherwise have a chance against the "I-can-grow-anywhere-anytime" bullies (though I must admit I'm having a change of heart about clover on my lawn -- it's green and kinda pretty, Shadow the puppy loves to roll in it, and it fixes nitrogen in the soil, so I think I'll let it stay put). Between maintaining our vegetable garden and weeding everywhere else too, I have plenty to keep me busy. So letting things grow where God plants them only makes sense (if they're not bully plants that want to take over the entire place) -- and I've never had happier bees or birds! They seem to love all the layers in the landscape, tall and short stuff mixed together in one glorious mess, where it's fun to hide and feed.

What makes me happiest is that my daughter has stopped saying, "Mom, don't you think we should clean up the yard?" In early spring, before everything grows, it's hard not to feel that way, except that I know there are plenty of plants under last year's detritus that will grow and hide the leaves and dead-looking stuff. And that dead-looking stuff is actually improving soil conditions by holding in moisture and feeding microorganisms that in turn, will feed the plants.

But what I love most of all are the surprises God gives me. This year, it's flame-like gaillardia, or blanket flowers, that have popped up in several places. The phlox that a friend gave me three years ago has finally decided to bloom. The rhubarb was looking sickly last year, but it's going gangbusters now, and there are purple headed chives and multi-coloured columbine all over the place. My lupins are all purple this year too (where did the pink ones go? or are they still planning to bloom?) and I've never had a lot of luck with growing echinacea, but one has appeared out of nowhere near some daisies. Best of all, there are lots of lilies, rudbeckia,  bergamot, nasturtiums, asters and poppies still to come.

Don't get me wrong -- I love gardens of all kinds, and am very impressed by neatly manicured yards and the huge amount of work that goes into keeping them so perfectly tidy. I have a few friends and relatives whose well-kept yards put mine to shame. But I'm also grateful that I have so many flowers to enjoy, growing right where they've reseeded themselves, right where God and the birds and the wind planted them.


  1. Hi Maria, it's nice to meet you. Do you know Naturegirl in person? Your garden looks so lovely. What you and God and Nature have created is something beautiful! I am currently fighting the tidiness battle because of my daughter's wedding reception at the end of summer. Can't wait to "let it go."

    1. I've never actually met Naturegirl, but I've followed her blog for some time because I love her sense of humour. You have a great sense of humour, too. I hope your daughter's wedding/marriage is wonderful.


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