Excepting a few herbs that still need to be potted, some potatoes growing in a (clean) trash can, and some NEW raspberry and blackberry bushes (!!!) that need to be planted alongside the neighbor’s fence, our garden spread is complete!
We have 5 different kinds of tomatoes, 3 pepper plants (plus one very sickly free pepper plant that we’re not sure will make it), 2 pickling cucumber plants, green arrow beans, a mini herb garden and some lettuce!
Most of these plants were started by someone else, but a few we started from seed ourselves. As we watch our garden grow (sometimes just a teensy bit obsessively), Emily and I are both amazed that it actually WORKS. I guess it’s a sad statement of how removed from the earth we have become that I am completely surprised that planting a seed in good soil, than adding water, sunshine and air actually results in a growing new thing.
Then again, maybe not.
True, I live the life of an urban Madisonian. I work in an building, I walk on a lot of pavement. I don’t really have a yard, and I haven’t had a garden since 1999. In many ways, I am fairly disconnected from the earth herself. However, I also think there is just something inherently AMAZING about growing food. Growing anything, really. It’s an act of creation that we play a small yet pivotal role in. Pushing a seed into the ground and waiting for it to grow is a reminder of our own fallibility, a beautiful illustration that we are only one part of a process much grander than ourselves.
I’m sure some of my super bio friends have responses about how humans can now create new cells, that over time we have changed the face of the plant through our control of agriculture, that we are agents of the process rather than mere participants. Those things may be true, but as I watch my lettuce plants start to grow the feeling that resonates through me isn’t, “I did this,” but rather, “This is happening.” And it’s happening because life works. Things grow. Things grow and we can eat them, and live from them, and they’ll still grow again. It’s absolutely magical.