Garden Philosophy

Cicero Statue:

If you have a garden and a library you have everything you need.

Marcus Tullius Cicero

Hip Hip Hooray for Cicero! With the exception of an internet connection, I couldn't agree more. The above quote from our Latin orator just about sums up my summer so far. Practically everyday, I have been either in my own, deer infested garden, or at my plot in the community garden, and my night table has remained stacked with library books.
My battle with the deer, as well as the usual gardening challenges, has prompted me to become more philosophical as I plan and cultivate. In my neck of the woods (and  in the absence of a deer fence) you have to:
  • "accept the things you cannot change and have the courage to change the things you can and the wisdom to know the difference".   In gardener's speak; get rid of everything the deer love to eat and embrace the fact that you are limited and make the most of it. 
  • "If you can't be with the one you love, love the one you're with."  
    I have a peony that was my husbands grandmother's. I have never liked peonies! They are ant ridden, bloom for a short time, and have to be propped up. However, in spite of it's poor location and my lack of attention it keeps coming up year after year producing big luscious pink blooms. AND the deer do not eat it! It seems to be saying: "I'm here. Look at me, I'm right under your nose and I will never let you down no matter how badly you treat me!" (sounds like a sad love story) So , although I'd rather have a dozen other species, I've decided to love and nurture it.

  • Seek inspiration and be a lifelong learner! I recently joined a local gardening club with two other friends and am hoping to learn more about gardening in our region. The best part is that the club organizes tours of other members' gardens. How inspiring is that?
  •  Put all your eggs in one basket, sometimes. I have a window box and a few pots that are accessible to the deer. I could fill them with critter resistant plants but sometimes you just have to be a risk taker. So, I filled them with everything but the kitchen sink ….. petunias, snapdragons, blazing star, nasturtiums, succulents, you name it. I mean the deer can't eat everything? Can they?
  • Know when to hold 'em and know when to fold 'em. But don't be too hasty to fold them! Finding the best location for our plants to thrive can sometimes be a challenge. We created a fenced in area beside our shed to plant vegies and flowers for cutting. However, it did not receive as much sun as we had hoped, so I've kind of neglected it. However, I just noticed that a cucumber plant actually has blossoms and is starting to trail and the spindly tomato plant has a string of tiny tomatoes! The carrots are coming too! 

A summer of reading and gardening is proving to be good for the mind and the body. Here's to you Cicero!


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