Friday, July 13, 2012

lessons from the garden

Weeding and Watering.

As you may have determined by my last post, I have a laissez faire approach to weeds. If they are pretty and behave themselves, they may stay. If they're ugly, they get ripped out right away. Likewise, if they encroach, smother or otherwise impede the growth or flourishing of the lawful plants (read: beans, tomatoes, peppers, cabbages, basil, herbs, recognized flowers, etc.), they will be uprooted.

Today was an uprooting sort of day.

I learned last week, to my dismay, that a half hour or so of water every other day (or so) may dampen the top of the soil, but does absolutely nothing where it counts: deeper down, where the roots are. Another 15 daylilies had arrived from our friend Don at - what IS his farm's name again? Lily-something. The queenmum will surely supply it in the comments. Anyway, digging deep holes to place them in revealed the water shortage. A half an inch down, the soil was bone dry. I'd been making much of how much time I spend in the garden watering and etc., but it sure hadn't accomplished anything! Note to self: if you're going to water, you have to water. Water like you mean it.

Out this morning, watering like I mean it, I learned another lesson: weeding helps with watering.

As I watered, I absent-mindedly pulled out some grass and the occasional ugly weed. Their roots not only brought the dry soil to the surface, but also left an avenue for the water to soak down into the soil. I crouched down, then, with the hose, watering and weeding at the same time. Three hours later, my compost bin is full, my legs and back are a bit sore, and the garden looks refreshed - but the soil probably still needs another couple of hours' worth of water on it!

How I wish it would rain. . . .

More than ever, I appreciate the parables in which Jesus talks about gardening. Preparing the soil, pruning, good and bad fruit, dealing with seeds, fertilizing, weeding, watering - He talks about it all. And as I do all of those things in my little garden, I think about how He is doing all of those things in my life, in the lives of those around me, and all the way up to our country, other countries, and the whole world. There is a time for everything, isn't there? Well, I see some weeding and some watering in our future. And I'm going to spend some more time re-reading the gardening parables.

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