When I started writing about Lanie’s garden, I admit that I was mostly working from memory–drawing on the details of my Dad’s garden in Ethiopia when I was a kid but even more from my various vegetable gardens that I plotted and planted and harvested and played around in after I had kids. In fact, I was helping rototill a garden plot the day my son David was born.
A few years later, David later grew an enormous pumpkin in North Dakota, which I was crazy enough to chop up for dinners. This is why I’m leery of vegetable gardens now.
I thought growing things should be USED and not WASTED. When the kids carved pumpkins, I was crazy enough to roast the seeds for us to eat, too.
I was raised to be practical. I was raised with a certain reverence for food and what it means to humans especially when they don’t have enough. I was also raised to be conscientious about choices and how we can make a difference even with little actions.
So I didn’t grow flowers. I barely NOTICED flowers.
My mom was fond of her flowers in Ethiopia. We kids shamelessly grabbed any part of them we needed for our games–and they sometimes got stuck in our hands for photos–but they were just, um, frivolous. Decorative. Not. That. Important.
Let’s just say I was a little short-sighted. Lanie changed all that.
When I did my research for my little outside girl who realizes the power of her own backyard, I came to understand the intricate dance of life in a way I never had before. Nothing is unimportant.
In fact…guess what? Planting a flower can be part of our little actions that can save the world.
I know this now as I listen to my heart going pitter pat as I watch bees and bumblebees in and out of the flowers in my garden. Here’s a smidge of this month’s news about bees:
“The mysterious vanishing of honeybees from hives can be directly linked to insectcide use, according to new research from Harvard University. The scientists showed that exposure to two neonicotinoids, the world’s most widely used class of insecticide, lead to half the colonies studied dying, while none of the untreated colonies saw their bees disappear.”
Check out birds. Check out butterflies. We humans are hard on the creatures who share space with us.
But turns out we can create little oases in our back yards. Birds and butterflies and bees need us to care. .
And we need our backyards, too. At least I do. I feel centered and calm and present to every moment when I’m out in mine. I love it that I created Lanie based on kids–myself, my own kids, kids I met in my travels that year–and now I’ve become Lanie, crazy about backyard habitat, in love with my rain gardens and my native plants (like this blue-eyed grass) and all the flowers and interesting leaves and stems and seeds.
1 thought on “Life imitates art imitates life”
Isn’t it interesting when we see who we’ve become and why. Aren’t we lucky to have gardens, flowers, food on the table and to have lived long enough to realize all of this. On a new roll of paper towels I have found a quote that I like…”One can bury a lot of problems by digging in the garden.” Maybe so. Thanks for your stories.