Friday, July 9, 2010

Kid's Gardening - I Believe

For the Kinder-garden Series, Kim over at Inadvertent Farmer asked us to write this week about what we believe. When it comes to the garden, there are a lot of things I believe in!

I believe that red, ripe tomatoes are the greatest treat the garden has to offer.

I believe that babies grow best in gardens.

Between the local news articles and the thousands of baby grasshoppers I have feasting on my lawn, I believe the story of the grasshopper plague that Laura Ingalls Wilder wrote about.

I believe that one should always be mindful of whether or not they suffer from a... ahem... "plumber's crack", but that it is especially important in the garden - otherwise, one might end up with mosquito bites in said crack, and this is a very uncomfortable experience. Trust me.

But most of all:

I believe gardening is 10% know-how, 10% luck, and 80% faith. I'm not so good with the faith part, but my kids? They amaze me.

I spend a ridiculous amount of time planting and growing carrots. I make a sort of "seed tape", I fight with the spring wind while I lay them out, carefully spritz them with water, cover them delicately with exactly 1/4" of soil, mulch, and water three times a day for three weeks until they sprout.
I give a small handful of carrot seeds to each of my girls, they walk over to their garden, sprinkle them generously in the area they'd like them to grow, and then they walk away. Three weeks later, their carrots have sprouted and are growing faster than mine.

Me? I doubt nature from the beginning. I just don't have a strong enough faith in those little seeds to believe they're going to turn into food. I nurture and I coddle and I worry - as if anything I do will have an effect on this natural process!
My girls don't have a problem with the faith part at all - they know without a doubt that if you plant some beans in the dirt...

...that they will grow higher than little hands can reach.

They see no reason that a sunflower pulled out of the ground as a weed can't be replanted in a better spot and turn into a beautiful plant.

When tomato plants freeze and look completely dead, they don't give up on them, they rescue them from Mom's compost pile and replant them, only to find tomatoes growing on the plant a few months later.

For all that I do believe, this is a lesson my children will teach me - I need to believe in nature.

8 comments: said...

This post made me smile. And it brought tears to my eyes. I love watching life through a child's eyes. And I so want to see the world through their innocent, trusting eyes.

I believe you are blessed. Truly blessed.

Cathryn said...

I love this post!!
I have a friend who is having some serious issues and she said she was going to spend time with me this summer even if she had to follow me around the garden...I warned her: "You know what you will learn in the garden don't you?" She hesitantly asked "What?" "Faith!" I replied!

It amazes me to see a seedling go from so delicate to sturdy and food producing as well as experience a little speck sprout just because it has soil, water and warmth! Faith is there as well, it does come easier for some.
Beautiful, thought provoking post!

Wendy said...

THis is great. I agree that it's probably 80 percent faith and how great that the little ones don't have all that doubting noise the adults hear!

I love that photo of cute little Cora planting seeds.

Anonymous said...

Your "little sprouts" are developing emunah under your care. Their hearts know what your head understands. Babies teach our hearts. Hugs!

Grace said...

Children are oh-so-much better at faith than we are. Great post!

Anonymous said...

"More grows in a garden
than was ever planted there."
Saw this as a siggy line and thought it was appropriate for you. We had a garden as children - a big one. So sometimes we'd hang out with mom, helping her weed (all those weeds), or sometimes we'd snack on tomatoes or green beans we picked. Your girls will always remember you and your gardens.
Hugs, Jan

inadvertent farmer said...

Favorite post of the week...seriously I could not agree more. Kids have such a built in faith that it never ever ceases to amaze and humble me.

Your garden looks awesome, Kim

Julie said...

Thanks so much to all of you for your sweet comments!
Basic Living - I agree, I am truly blessed. Thank you!
Cathryn - as a Momma who struggles with faith herself, let me assure you, the garden truly is the best place to learn (and teach) faith. Thanks for stopping by!
Wendy - don't you just wish we could keep that childlike innocence forever? The world would be such a more pleasant place if we all could let go of the doubt, wouldn't it? Thanks for all your comments today, it's always lovely to hear from you!
Life - The whole time I was writing this post, 'emunah' was the word coming to mind. Love when life presents clear illustrations of concepts like that!
Jan - thanks for that. You chose some meaningful words there, though you may not know just how meaningful! Hooray for wonderful memories of the garden as a child, love that!
Grace - yes, they are! Thanks for stopping by and commenting!
Kim - Thanks so much :o) And thanks for the inspiration in writing it! I had a great time the other night piddling about in the garden and considering all of the things that I believe. Wonderful topic this week!