I can imagine limitless opportunities for personal,communal, global flourishing when it comes to all things gardening-related.  It goes way beyond playing in the dirt–the Master Gardener’s course has required math, and science too.

Ok, I doubt you’ll find me at that far end of the spectrum for long, but still it goes way beyond plants–everything from water to soil (that’s pronounced “soul” in these parts), to propagation, to seed saving, to climatology, to celestial patterns, to seriously limitless relatable subject matter as complex as quantum physics, and yet still the label “gardener” relates just as easily to a casual shopper picking out petunias.

Some choose beauty over function, others just the opposite, still others are like me with a penchant for both.  My life goals, which once centered around speaking a dozen languages and living on every continent, seem to be floating lately toward the bees and butterflies.  The list of lifelong learning  potentials accumulates daily:  mushroom, worm, and tree farming, orchards, groves, vineyards; there aren’t enough years left for all I imagine creating.

Of all I love about gardening, and so far there’s very little I don’t, I’m most impressed by how vast the world of “gardening” actually is.  The amount of knowledge and experience required to really succeed is remarkable enough.  But the array of “gardener types” is even more impressive.  Some are gurus of compost, others experts in irises, one strives for the biggest pumpkin, another the sweetest watermelon, another still the most unique orchid or tastiest basil.  How easily I can relate to the passion of them all.

There’s something so primordial and universal in gardening, and all associated with it.   It attracts at once the ultra-type A lab-tech-type and the carefree back-to-the-land hippie-type, both looking for essentially the same thing:  Truth.  Truth in the simplest beauties and the most complex systems.

I can’t imagine a hobby or lifestyle that could simultaneously feed, interest, entertain and infuse more different kinds of individuals-from city to suburb to farm, from rich to poor, from country to country, from prehistory to beyond our imaginable future-gardening is nature’s language-one more of the dozen I still plan to learn.

Community Garden in Edinburgh, Scotland

Community Garden in Edinburgh, Scotland

Cottage Garden created by Master Gardeners at the East Texas Arboretum

Cottage Garden created by Master Gardeners at the East Texas Arboretum

Holy Sweet Potato Garden Goddess!

Holy Sweet Potato Garden Goddess!

Last of okra saved for seed, and on to the winter garden. How lucky we are in Texas to garden year round!

Last of okra saved for seed, and on to the winter garden. How lucky we are in Texas to garden year round!