Monday, May 13, 2013

Dirty Hands and Balm for the Soul

I'm garden-obsessed and I love it! 
Image ©MK McClintock
Among my many hobbies and pleasure is gardening. I love feeling the earth flow through my fingers and watch nature grow and change through the seasons. What does that mean for you? It means a few of my posts this summer will be about gardening. If you're not someone who enjoys digging around in the dirt and digging up stubborn weeds, there are still plenty of ways to enjoy a garden--including, drum roll please . . . reading and writing in one! 
When I first returned to Montana a year ago, after almost of year of fun in New England (I'll share those stories later), I had been so disappointed in how the tenants failed to take care of the home. It was depressing to see years of hard work neglected. Rather than spread out the work over years, we decided to do everything we could to get the gardens back to, or at least close to, their former glory by summer (this pictures are from the summer before I went to New England).

Last year in the spring, I set to work weeding, trimming, mowing, re-creating the rock gardens where the bear knocked down part of the beds. I know my chiropractor is grateful I'm a steady client, but I certainly don't make her job easier.

It can take years to establish a garden, but it's much like reading a library of books. A lot of patience, a desire to learn and grow, and the willingness to keep at it. We never stop learning and gardens never stop growing--I find that comforting.  

Do you like to garden, or even just be around gardens? Do you prefer vegetables, flowers, or do you like both?

In honor of gardens, here are few books to give a gander this season. Some I've read, some I plan to read this year. I've you've read one, or all, let us know what you thought!

The Secret Garden by Francis Hodgson Burnett (can never get enough of a classic)
The Red Garden by Alice Hoffman 
The Garden of Evening Mists by Tan Twang Eng
The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton 

Happy reading (or writing) in the garden!


  1. I own a couple of those books, but they are still on my tower of TBR books. I'm not much of an outdoorsy girl, but I think gardens are beautiful. I like looking at all of the pretty flowers.

    1. They're on my TBR tower too! I agree--just looking at pretty flowers can brighten someone's day--whether you grew them or not.

  2. I am not the best at gardening, but I love digging in the dirt and piddling around. My yard is a WIP. I add a little each year to see what will live and if I like it. Thanks for the beautiful pics and happy gardening.

    1. Thanks Sherry! Piddling around in a garden is one of the best parts--even if the garden changes all the time.

  3. I used to enjoy puttering in a flower garden, but my back got so bad I had to give it up. Also, it's difficult to have a somewhat green thumb living in Texas with such heat and severe water restrictions. I just have to enjoy looking a pictures like yours.