As the winter chills and the grey skies descend, sending me into a whirl of homesickness for warm days and a family gathering, I’ve looked to my garden to help snap me out of it. Sure it was a blustery, cold day – but getting out into the elements and planting some of the few bulbs I hadn’t yet got to was good therapy! And I watched a kingfisher diving into my pond – absolutely amazing – and suddenly my world righted itself just a little.
Mum gave me a beautiful ceramic pendant a few years ago that now hangs on the rustic fence at the back of my garden. It reads…. “to forget how to dig the earth and tend the soil is to forget ourselves” (Ghandi). I certainly find my horticultural exploits very grounding and life affirming – and have met so many people, both personally and in the virtual world, who feel the same. We are so lucky to have discovered such a beautiful gift.
I have promised myself that in 2017 I’m not going to start another large garden project. Rather, I want to really look at what I have and make the very best of all of it. Enhanced colour combinations, extended seasonal interest, growing food that takes me through all the seasons, installing the polytunnel, sorting out the shed! It will be a year of maintenance and completion. And when possible, to encourage and include my little girl in the garden – to try and get some of this goodness into her life as well.
But for now, as the forecast is set to dip again, I’m enjoying planning the vegetable garden planting for 2017. The thousand bulbs that went into the front garden are starting to shoot – so, while trying to live as mindfully as possible, I’m also looking forward to the show of colour after all the planting work of 2016.