Saturday, July 30, 2016

Sowing Money Plant

Money plant, which bloomed so beautifully in May, has gone to seed. Last week, the seed pods were a pretty mauve. This week, due in part to the drought, they've turned brown.

Now i pull out this biennial (Lunaria) and walk around my flowerbeds shaking it like a magic wand. Next spring, i want money plant here. And here. And here. The seed husks fly off and land on the ground like pennies from heaven.

Every word that flies out of our mouth is planting seeds for our future. A friend told me yesterday, "I don't want to talk about it, because talking about it will only make me upset." That is wise speech in action.

We want to prepare the ground for wholesome thoughts, words, and deeds. We all already have quite enough weedy thoughts and words for this lifetime, thank you very much.

A penny for your thoughts.

Money plant blooming in late May with seed pods just forming.

Friday, July 29, 2016

Random Acts of Gardening

Today i saw a bumper sticker that i thought i authored. But i guess great minds think alike.

Practicing random acts of gardening is often a random act of kindness. I'm thinking public or semi-public gardens, such as those in parks or in front of the post office or doctor's office. I do like to pull a weed or two as i walk by.

We aren't practicing random acts of kindness for praise. In fact, we already know that no one may ever even notice. The ego of "aren't i being good!" is almost entirely absent. These random acts of kindness are not for your persona, your public face. These random acts of kindness or of gardening are your private face, for yourself. I think of it as leaving things better than i found them, which is my New Year's resolution for this year.

Practice a random act of gardening today!

Thursday, July 28, 2016

The Garden at Dawn

When i come to consciousness, around 5:30 a.m., it takes some intention to open my eyes, move my body, and stretch. I don't really need more sleep.

The thought that rolls my body out of bed is The garden! Now in the cool of the morning, i can feed the birds, feed the fish, drink a cup of tea, meander around the garden, and meditate. By 8:30, it's hot, and it's too late to garden. By mid-morning, it's time to sit in the shade, wearing sunglasses, and allow the day to run according to its own schedule.

But now, just after dawn, all is quiet, a few birds still sing, and the world is beautiful.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Fresh Blueberries

My neighbor David has invited me to pick as many blueberries as i wish from his 30 bushes, so i pick a quart at a time. I had forgotten just how delicious fresh blueberries are. Oh, my. And all those anti-oxidants too.

My friend's generosity tastes delicious!

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Enemy in a Blueberry

My neighbor, David, invited me to come pick blueberries. He has about 30 blueberry bushes, all under a giant net. The net protects the berries from the birds. Now David tells me about another pest--a fly who lays its eggs in the berries, which creates a dimple. Soon, the blueberry turns to mush.

David has set out small bowls of raspberry vinegar (plus dish soap) to attract the flies, which then perish. He's being assiduous about not leaving a single blueberry on the ground. He tells me that if he finds a dimpled blueberry, he eats it immediately. "I'm eating my enemy," he says. "I'm not sure that's very Buddhist."

Faced with an irritating "enemy," i sometimes try to kill it / them with kindness. "Eating" kindness is much better for my innards than consuming (and being consumed by) retribution or revenge.

David is eating his enemy in a blueberry. It's delicious!

Saturday, July 23, 2016

A New Food Dryer

I went to my local hardware store to buy a food dryer. Well, i already have a food dryer--a wooden box the size of an apartment refrigerator that my brother-in-law built for me 30 years ago and powered by four 100-watt lightbulbs.

I wanted one of those round models that sits on the countertop. In a small town, the hardward store is small, but usually has everything i need. As i was checking out, i sighed, "I'm looking for a food dryer, but i couldn't find one."

The clerk looked up and across the store to the kitchenware department. "There's one on the top shelf," he said. "Do you want some help in getting it down?"

Oh, the long view is so important. I had perused the kitchen equipment shelves twice and not seen the food dryer. Yet, from his vantage point, 60 feet away, the clerk could see it.
When i'm tangled up with the wants and don't-wants of my daily life, i can't see the long view. Then, a week, a month, a year later, Oh.... Yes, that happened perfectly, as it turned out. Even though i wanted something else at the time.

Today, i'm drying raspberries, and i'm pretty sure those will taste great a few months from now.