I love my garden. Part of my heart will always belong to botany. Before I became committed to solely music in my college career, I was a double major for the first two years, with botany being my major along side music.  As a senior in high school I originally planned on going to college to study botany before someone suggested I major in music instead.  Embarrassingly enough, I didn’t even know that colleges offered music degrees.  Don’t ask me why, because I don’t know; I guess I didn’t give my art enough credit.  Forgive me musicians who, upon reading this sacrilegious past thought, are screaming and pulling their hair out in utter shock.  I’ve learned my lesson ;-).

I had decided on botany (Actually my major would be biology with my emphasis in botany.) because I loved the process of plant pollination and how it is carried out.  I loved cross pollinating plants, and to this day my husband catches me out in our yard pollinating my lilies.  I love unique plants and unique varieties of the staple plants in any given yard (daffodils, tulips, day lilies, and such).  I have black tulips.  My day lilies are not the red, orange, and yellow varieties you will see in home depot.  Because they aren’t stock plants in most stores , I would buy bulbs and wait until they popped up.  I get a child-like excitement and check on my new additions every day even if it means I just stare at dirt for a week or two.

This year, I finally got organized enough to dig out four rows and three or four spots to put watermelons, cantaloupe, and butternut squash (with my husband lending his muscles as well ;-)). My garden around those rows and places for vining plants is very weedy, but at least the rows are clean :-).  Next year I will spend the extra time to weed the whole area.  Ryan wants to build me nice planter boxes.  I went to the store and carefully picked out the fruits and vegetables I wanted.  My dad didn’t understand why I wouldn’t just buy plants at the home improvement stores, but I wanted plants that weren’t the classic tomato, zucchini, strawberry, etc.. I bought elite zucchini hybrid, American Giant Hybrid Sunflower (with harvestable edible seeds),Waltham 29 broccoli, Sugar Baby Watermelon, Danver #126 Carrots, Rio Grande Tomato,Yard Long Dow Gauk Asparagus Beans, Waltham Butternut Squash, Wando Peas, Big Red Heirloom Tomato, Sugar Dots Hybrid Sweet Corn, Silver Queen Hybrid Sweet Corn, Tendergreen Burpless Cucumber, Early Snowball Cauliflower, and Cantaloupe given to me by of my daughter’s teachers.

At first, my daughter didn’t care about growing a garden.  She didn’t dislike the idea; it just didn’t interest her.  But pretty quickly she became very interested (maybe because I constantly talked about it with a bunch of excitement ;-)).  As we planted the seeds and they started to grow, she began assigning rows to each family member.  Coincidentally, she would change the assignments based on how much growth was in the row.  Interestingly enough, her row was always the most lush:). As the days went on, I started to realize that this garden was giving this special bonding experience.  Every day we have to check the garden.  She insists on it.  We check the raspberries to see how ripe they are, and we make sure to check the brocoli and pea plants because they are the only ones that are showing vegetables growing.  My garden is now our garden, and I love how excited she is to learn all about these plants.  She decided, upon eating some cherries from our cherry tree, to plant two cherry pits.  She keeps checking on them to see if they sprouted ;-).  I am trying to figure out how to gently break the news to her that her cherry pits won’t do anything until next year, and they won’t be big cherry trees for years.  I’m thinking I will soften the news with a cheap cherry tree from the home improvement store.  I think that might work.  It will become her tree.

I think it is very important for a mother-daughter relationship to have a common interest or something special that is done together.  It creates memories that will never go away.  My daughter is one in which time spent together is something very important to her, and I can tell the time we share in this garden is special to her.  I am excited about the idea of this garden becoming a yearly tradition and special thing we can share.  It’s a place where we can escape the busyness, the noise…the daily stress.  Though it is our family’s garden, she and I get the most excited.  I am able to share with her what excites me about the garden, flowers, and plant life in general.  I am able to share how I can connect with God in my garden and show how amazing he is by just showing her the beauty of botany.  It gives us the time and space to have conversations about life, the small and the big stuff, and I can help guide her along the way.

 

Below are a few pictures of my garden.  There is so many more plants that I could have photographed, but I’m serious.  The paths in-between the garden rows are crazy weedy!

Overgrown garden raspberries, I know, but they are still so good.
Overgrown, I know, but they are still so good.
One of our favorite garden plants to inspect daily is our brocoli plant.
One of our favorite plants to inspect daily is our brocoli plant.

Sarah

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Sarah