Survival is the second item on the list we consider enhancing our landscapes. Usually, we consider if we like it or not and wonder how big does it grow. Sometimes we even wonder about water requirements. In today’s world, survival is often not a prerequisite. Understanding the needs of each plant is essential. The new gardener finds this out by trial and error. A little research often keeps the spirit of gardening alive.
The events of late had me a bit worried. Had the plantings at the United States Botanical Gardens had survived the protests? I had to see for myself what the gardens would look like after a few seasons of pandemic and now protests. The survival of one of my favorite places in downtown Washington, DC was of interest to me. I headed down to the United States Botanic Garden.
Admittedly, I was not prepared emotionally for our current reality. I quickly turned back to the gardens along the side of the United States Botanic Garden. Briefly turning back to capture this photo, the mission of finding beauty had a sense of urgency. There had to be something to distract from the necessary fencing to ensure the survival of our Nation’s Capitol building.
NATURE TEACHES US
Creative seasonal plantings serve as lesson plans for the public. These displays set an example that hopefully encourages the public to the garden. Plants are used which withstand extreme heat, drought, and adverse conditions. The surrounding grounds with minimal maintenance demonstrated survival in the garden.
We are all students of nature. Mother Nature teaches us that we can leave the garden alone sometimes. Did you know that there are beneficial insects underground? These garden friends welcome above-ground protection to ensure their survival. I have found, leaving some tasks undone, encourages visiting the garden even in the midst of winter.
Visiting the garden with no tasks in mind is a good thing. Just visiting and pausing can be a form of self-care.
MENTAL ESCAPISM IN THE GARDEN
The horticultural displays and plantings present the opportunity for a mental escape. This method of mental escapism in the garden is one of my favorite methods of survival.
The garden experience teaches us survival. As we have endured this year of unintentional pausing, the garden has been there for us. The garden has created a new generation of survivors. People from all walks of life who have reconnected with the earth.
The garden encourages each of us to embrace a bit of the earth. Our gardens can provide food for our physical health. The garden provides food for our mental health. To garden is to unknowingly sip an elixir provided by the earth. Survival is a seed we plant in our life gardens and water from the goblet of faith. As this seed grows, we learn lessons from the garden which help us become survivors.
The garden continues to teach us the art of survival. Has your seed of survival sprouted in the midst of this madness? Have you watered your life garden with a little faith? We must be survivors.
I am a garden survivor. One who is patiently awaiting the Conservatory to reopen.
One thing I know for sure, when it is safe, I will be there.
Teri, Cottage In The Court