It was such a beautiful day! All week I had been looking forward to spending it in my front yard flower garden. For a variety of reasons, I hadn’t been able to spend very much time out there lately. It was something I just had to do, for my own well-being as well as for the garden’s. As I was sitting out there pulling up grass and weeds, and enjoying the warmth of the spring sun, I thought about how my green thumb has grown over the years.
Some of my earliest memories involve flowers. I remember my mother growing red tulips when I was very young, maybe four or so. I remember enjoying the scent of peonies when I was about five. My mother loves gardening, so it’s not too surprising that I have grown to love it, too.
When my kids were young, I didn’t have very much time to devote to gardening, so what time I had was given mainly to flowers. Even if it was a pot of petunias on the porch, I needed some natural beauty to enjoy.
When we moved out to the country almost ten years ago, our kids were getting older and more independent. We had the space, so my husband built some raised beds and fenced them in. That was the beginning of the vegetable garden. Each year I’ve spent more time in there, broadening the range of herbs and vegetables that I grow. Our kids didn’t show much interest in it, and I didn’t force it on them. It was something that I wanted to enjoy, not spend the time fussing at them. I had come to gardening on my own accord, and I wanted them to have the same choice.
Now that the kids are grown, I’m able to indulge my love of gardening even more. I’ve always admired the pictures of beautiful gardens in magazines, and now on Pinterest, but I had to be content admiring others’ works of art. I’m not sure my gardens will ever look like that, and that’s okay. It’s the journey that I enjoy – learning by doing, being free to experiment and make mistakes, and asking “what if?” Gardening takes a lot of time. Not only the investment of my time now, but seasons for things to mature. Because we’ve moved around a lot in the past, I was never in one place long enough to see that maturity.
The front yard was bare dirt when we first moved here. Our home is on a rocky hilltop with great drainage, so it dries out quickly. It wasn’t until my husband built a fence around the front yard to keep out traffic, both human and animal, that I was able to start working on transforming it. Every year I’ve started new beds, and planted more. The yard is finally starting to get filled in.
The Gardening Bug Bites
A few months ago I wrote a post called Homegrown Salads ~ A Simple Pleasure that included a giveaway for Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds. A few weeks afterward, I was shocked to find out that my son had ordered some seeds from them! I was amused by what he chose. I guess, like me, he wanted to try new things. He ordered seeds for yellow and white strawberries. (I’ve never grown strawberries from seed, much less yellow or white ones.) He ordered some eggplant. (That’s one thing I’ve never grown, because I wouldn’t know what to do with it – that’s not something I eat very often.) He has some other things as well, like corn, peppers, tomatillos, and lupines. All of a sudden, my son that had never shown any interest in gardening, was sending me daily texts with pictures of his seedlings. And we’re now having conversations about plants. You just never know when the gardening bug is going to bite!
A Rewarding Hobby
Gardening is a rewarding hobby. When I was younger, I enjoyed arts and crafts, but now gardening has taken over as my art form. I love playing with the colors and textures while at the same time working towards some other objective, such as attracting birds and butterflies, having sweet scents, or food to eat. I can’t imagine ever getting tired of gardening because there will always be new things to try. A green thumb definitely grows on you!
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I remember growing up getting a penny for each weed I pulled with daddy, learning how to save cornflowers and spread those dried heads around the yard. And OH NO, impatiens are for shadey spots. I enjoyed just being outside w/dad early Sat am. ❤️
Now married, we have lived in St. Louis, upstate NY, Lubbock TX, Atlanta, now we retire back to Central MO. Whenever we moved I had to re-learn “WHAT ZONE AM I IN?!?” And I agree that I’d love to go back and see what has matured. lol
I hope to get those texts w/pix from my kids in a few years. 😍
I’m glad you understand about moving around, too. I hope your kids catch the bug so you can share what you know with them. I love impatiens, too. I was just eyeing some yesterday, but decided to wait just a bit longer.
I spent the weekend with my flowers as well. I was lucky enough to inherit a yard with lots of beautiful perennials, but sometimes they are not placed particularly well (like randomly in the middle of the yard), and sometimes a bed has just become too crowded, so I’ve been working on giving them homes where they can really shine. Glad your son is becoming interested! Some of my kids love helping me, others not so much. But I hope that by watching me they at least learn how to grow their own food and understand what it takes should they ever want or need to do it themselves.
That’s nice that you inherited some pretty plants, and that you appreciate them! Rearranging and dividing are never done, I don’t think. But I like that, too. I’ve mainly been cleaning up lately, but as I come across some lilies that need to be divided, or a bare spot, I’ll take a minute to do some rearranging. It’s all part of the fun!
I grew up with flowers too. It seemed to be my mom that started it, but as my dad got older he became more interested too, and eventually they had a huge perennial garden that they created and maintained together. As a child I had my own little garden, complete with a homemade concrete birdbath in the middle.
We’ve moved around a lot too, and even now, we know we have one more home in our future…our retirement home, but we still landscape and plant until that time comes.
I enjoy seeing your pictures of your parents’ beautiful gardens! That’s such a nice inheritance for you to have. I don’t know what the future holds for us, either, but I plant anyway!
My gardening journey is very similar to yours! I still feel like a beginner even 25 or more years into this hobby! Thank you for your writing, it was so pleasant to read this morning. Have a great day!
I feel like a beginner, too. Every season is different, with different weather, different insects, etc. I’m not sure I’ll ever feel like I’ve mastered it. Thanks for reading and commenting! I enjoyed hearing from you!
Love this, especially that your son is now gardening. 🙂 Also love that rabbit statue, it’s SO cute!
Thank you, I love it, too. I’m also happy to be able to share what I know with my son. His other interest is fixing cars and motorcycles and I can’t talk very intelligently about that.
I love that your son is taking to gardening now!!! Maybe there is hope that my boys will one day too! They are often out there with me but not always as interested and joyous as I am about the work and the planting. I LOVE that little bunny ornament! I’d love to start putting pretty things in my garden but my boys need to get a bit older still…. somehow pretty things still seem to break! Thanks for sharing your story 🙂
I like adding little things to the garden. Most of my decorations have sentimental value. I’ll probably share more of them in the coming months. You could decorate with rusty and refurbished things, if you like that look. They’re less breakable.
I love it that your son is growing his own seedlings! (I especially LOVE lupines–a major roadside beauty in New England.)
I’m not sure why he chose lupines. That makes me laugh! I’m more familiar with the bluebonnets that grow wild in Texas. They’re in that family.
What a lovely post. I feel so peaceful in the garden. My grandparents gardened, but my parents didn’t at all. It took be years to begin to build some skill in the garden, but three of my four kids love it. I tend to be overly pragmatic, but my daughter makes sure I remember to plant the pretty things that feed my soul! Thanks, for the sweet images of your garden space!
Thank you for visiting my garden. I appreciate your comments!
Good morning! I keep hoping that the gardening bug bites my kid but since she lives in a high rise I’m guessing it will be a few more years!
She can dabble in planters. There’s always hope! Who can resist a pot of pretty flowers?