Wednesday, September 28, 2011

The Aging Garden(er)

I just returned from a week in Florida where i talked to several aging gardeners who have given up gardening. The reasons are many: moving into a retirement community, stiff joints, failing sight, the natural attrition as orchids and bromeliads succumb to unexpected Florida freezes.

We age and our gardens age. Some gardens peter out. Some gardens become impenetrable jungles. A certain dispassion arises, which a younger gardener may misread as lack of interest.

For those who are fascinated by the natural world, perhaps the emphasis shifts to a different syllable. Instead of focusing on doing and controlling, on having (more plants) and becoming (a better gardener), the attention naturally shifts to simple unfolding.

The aging body unfolds in new and unexpected ways. And so does the garden and all the plants within it.

1 comment:

  1. May be time to let it go and just observe; or teach a younger gardener how to care and tend the garden.