I have indulged in my plants a lot more lately than I have even last year, when this bug bit me. This was not a pandemic-induced habit. I have really given of my myself to my plants lately — losing track of time and spending endless amounts of it just absorbed, my hands dirty and trimming, pruning and fixing things, making of it an entire day’s activity and feeling utterly satisfied at the end.
In the plants I have seen natural cycles of birth, death, rebirth and hibernation with humbling proximity that has comforted and supported me.
As much as I have given, I have received in return.
Today, I took all my indoor plants out for their periodic couple of days in the sun. And I looked around the home and realised how sparse it all looks minus the green spots.
There is true life in plants, in how easily they lend that live to the spaces around them, wherever they may be placed. And I mean life more than the stuff that makes leaves sprout and shrivel.
As the author of this piece in the New Yorker quotes Sue Stuart Smith, the author of A Well Gardened Mind; I was interested in the unconscious aspects of gardening—the symbolism, and the level of metaphor.
There has been plenty of that. If you have read the blog recently, you’d know how much I have spoken about my plants and the reflections they offer of my life and process. The unconscious, the symbolic, the metaphors, and how much I have looked to them for meaning.
When we sow a seed, we plant a narrative of future possibility.
It is what I have gained the most. The spots of green are a bonus.