Today is the longest day and finally I have something to be joyful about. The weather seems to have turned. It is sunny and warm; the sky is blue and the cicadas are singing. Now that is kind of summer I’ve been looking for.
The garden is bursting into life. The plants are putting out tender new leaves, accentuating their old weather weary leaves that wear their torn, battle-scarred damage like a badge of honour. They made it. But not all did, and there are a few gaps in the garden I’m hoping to fill with new replacements, so long as the garden centre still has them. I suspect I may be saving souls in the clearance section.
Up until recently I didn’t enjoy going into the garden, it brought me down. The only things flourishing were the weeds. But the tables have turned, and I find myself out in the garden inspecting things in the new morning light, while the dew is still heavy on the ground. A day with warm light filtering through young leaves gives a sense of promise. The energy being absorbed can only result in healthier plants, abundant growth and ultimately a plentiful harvest. I’m excited what my garden will do rather than being fearful of what it will become.
A garden bathed in sunshine is loaded with potential and my creativity is unleashed from the gloom that was holding it back. An early harvest of zucchini is on the way to becoming a sweet and spicy pickle, to capture some of this much appreciated sunshine and release it when things are gloomy again in the winter.
And with Christmas and the summer holidays just days away, my handy helper and I chipped away at the weeds removing most of them. It looked a little impossible to do in the time we had, but with friendly chit chat filling the air we soon restored order to the garden. Had we left it, by the time the holidays were over, and we turned our attention back to the garden, these weeds would have been the dominant plants with a stranglehold on all that is good in the garden.
Knowing the garden is in a good place and the weather is right, it allows the joy of Christmas to wash over me wholeheartedly, rather than me trying desperately to get the feels. There is still a chance of more rain, but rain waters an unattended garden better than any other method. And the potential for a productive season can clearly be seen.
Finally, after months of planning and preparation the garden is doing what it should – giving me immense pleasure and happiness. It is always better to go through life feeling joy. There is a lightness in your step and in your heart. All things seem possible and effervesce with a bubbling excitement. It removes the drudgery and even the most arduous chore becomes an opportunity for a blessing. I always try to look for a bright side, even in the darkest days, because if you look hard enough you will always find something to bring a moment of joy.
And with that I have come to the end of my brief little series on advent. I hope you noticed that the Hope, Peace, Love and Joy in the garden reflect the values I share in my life. I may have mixed the order up a little, but the intention was there. The garden is a great teacher, and it easily mirrors life with the lessons being taught. And if you look closely you can see the hand of God unfolding in a blooming flower, the intricacy of a spider web or the strength and support offer by a tendril holding on as the plant grows towards the sun. Or even just witnessing the miracle of a seed bursting into life and growing into a magnificent plant.
So, with that, knowing the garden is in good shape, and will be in good care with the house sitter, and the weather improving, I can take some time to enjoy Christmas festivities and spend time with my family. I want to thank you all for your support and encouragement this year, it has meant a lot. I wish you all a Merry Christmas and a safe and Happy New Year.
Come again soon – I will be back in the new year with more gardening goodness.
Sarah the Gardener : o)