Real love for gardening

Published 9:58 am Thursday, March 9, 2023

By Jan Penton-Miller


The skies streaked with stark naked tree limbs are a thing of the past. First buds, then leaves covered the branches, and all manner of flowering shrubs have burst into bloom heralding warmer weather and the coming of spring.

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In backyards throughout our land early birds are digging in the soil readying it for planting. I visited three garden centers this week and reveled in the vibrant colors all around. Two flame bougainvilleas and a lovely hanging basket of purple petunias seemed to jump into my cart. 

Other plant enthusiasts were out in full force enjoying the sunshine and dreaming of gardens bursting with life.

Growing plants from seeds takes a little more time and effort, but can be a more affordable way of getting the same results. I noticed the sticker price had grown exponentially from years before, but pulled out the old wallet anyway. I know that the prices for everything have jumped dramatically so why grouse about it.

 Interest in vegetable gardening has grown for a variety of reasons. I believe the supply chain issues we experienced in recent years caused many people to want to be a little more self-sufficient. When I noticed an abundance of vegetable plants available this piqued my interest in planting a few.

On my grandparent’s farm when I was a child there was never a lack of much of anything no matter what was happening in the world. My grandfather and my grandmother worked hard everyday making that happen. 

They saved seed from year to year so they only purchased new varieties they wanted to try making the process much more affordable. The sunshine and rain were free and hard work was not a thing to be avoided, but rather a part of life.      

Good health habits of eating lots of fruits and vegetables and exercise paid off for my Papaw. I remember one of the things he liked to do even when he was an old man was jump and kick up his heels. He was a real hoot, but he stayed young and healthy for most of his life.

Gardeners are generally hardy folks who love the land and nature. When the sun begins to warm the earth and a new growing season rolls around they can be found doing what they love to do. My grandmother used to say she hoped when the Lord called her home she would be found with her hoe in her hand. Now that’s a love of gardening.