This is optimism, gentle readers:
This little plant was the last of the seedlings we put in last year that had not yet reemerged, yet over the past week we found these tender new shoots peeking up from under the old growth. And for me, it means that a long, hard winter, a growing family of voles, and just plain dumb luck cannot be discounted when the determination to grow and thrive is present.
(There are probably a number of “Tuesdays with Morrie” lessons that could be imparted from this, but I’m just too darn excited that all of the plants came back to really take time to reflect on that.)
This is growing in a raised bed out in our yard that had started out as a temporary vegetable patch until the Master Gardener in the family could identify the best in-ground plot for his veggies. Then it became a purgatory of sorts for plants he would find, but didn’t have time to make a permanent home right away so he’d plunk them down in here until he could get around to a formal transplant. Over the years, it had kind of fallen to neglect…
Really not something I could live with. So, for Mother’s Day last year, I asked if I could stage a hostile attack on the unwanted growth and plug in some plants and things I wouldn’t mind seeing year-round. The Master Gardener was kind of distracted at the time, and didn’t object. So, taking a couple of days off (and a couple of ibuprofen in advance, to ward off what would be some pretty achy muscles), I cleared out many weeds – and many of the weeds put up a pretty good fight. *cough* Thistles! *cough*
By the time the dust had settled and the spade was put away, little shoots of hope were in their new, hopefully permanent, homes.
One year later, things are looking promising. And that feels pretty darn good. It also makes lots of the usual aches, pains, and expletives associated with gardening all the more worth it.