Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Abundance (06/08/06)
TITLE: When is too much too much?
By Margaret Watson
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When I go to the garden centre or the farmer’s market I often hear people say ‘Oh, that’s a lovely plant, but I just haven’t got room. I’m not that kind of gardener, though I can’t always afford the plants I would like. Instead every spring I plant loads of seeds – flowers, veg and fruit. At that time of year of course there is plenty of room, and however how many times I do it I never allow for how big everything is going to grow or the plants that arrive by themselves or arrive in bird seed or with compost. The biggest geraniums are hidden under the ground so I place pots on top of them, only to have these pushed aside later. The honey suckle looks half dead so I plant something to hide it and so it goes on.
Some things I planted years ago, such as my Tay berry. I’ve had it four years and so far we’ve had about 4 berries off it. But this year it has decided to stay and at the moment is covered with tiny, immature fruit and lots of flowers. I cut the raspberries back at the end of the season, but now they are back twice as big and it takes a thick pair of trousers to venture to the bottom of the garden.
One of the main problems is of course that some seeds are so tiny – it is very hard to plant just one or two foxgloves. Some are a little easier – wall flowers for instance, but why do I never mark the ones with the best colours before the flowers fade – because if I did the others would never have a chance.
We only have a tiny back garden – 15 feet by about 30, so I tend to go for the tiered effect – my herbs are in a set of wire fruit baskets hanging from the window sill and the green house is host to a trellis hung with baskets – I just have to remember to water them – but what happens when we go to France next month? –the bath is going to be full of plants sitting on a damp towel and the tiny lawn will be covered with all the things that normally live quietly in the green house including my vines and passion flower.
We used to have quite a big lawn, but it has gradually shrank until it is just big enough for us to sit out on a warm evening and enjoy the beauty – the freesias I planted 4 or 5 years ago and which have finally come out in all their glory, the geraniums – I started out with five, but can’t resist a new one, and then there are the various crosses that self seed. The stocks – just one will perfume any garden.
God loves abundance and that is why He makes gardeners like me a little forgetful – but not forgetful of who created all this – I am only the labourer, but the wagers are unbelievable. John 10 verse 10 ‘I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.’ And that of course applies to much more than garden plants.
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