It is spring time! The shade of green deepens by the day and my garden is the happiest it will be all year! Beofre i dive into planting this weekend I pause for thought and ask myself “What is happening in my garden? What will grow this year, what will perish? What will I tend and what will I compost?” Just like a family, the garden is always there, ever rooted, but never the same. Every season new things come in strong while others fade away. When I look around this morning, I see peonies popping up that I thought had surely died. I wonder why our lilacs only give a few blooms when they are almost 8 feet tall, and though this garden seems so crowded, I see all the empty spots where I can still sneak in some more flowers, give some more water and continue to create and cultivate!
Last year was a year of great inward and outward growth, yet I found myself desperately parched by the end of the season. I had endevored to farm a tired, hot piece of land that needed deep care and deep healing. It was my pandemic hail mary, I wanted to bring life when so much had been lost as a way to give and grow and generate good. It became a place where women & children gathered with me to sing and sow and feel safe for just a few hours a week. It was healing ground, giving and getting curative connection. It gave flowers and food, more than I had ever had land, time and capacity to grow in my life!! On the physical plan, it was a success, but deep down it had revealed something deeper that needed tending.
All this growth had ripened a hard truth, how deep that healing that is needed really is. No amount of attention & water could undo years of neglect on this land, on all land. We as a people have fallen out of synce with the earth, with generative relationships with the land, and with practices that are reciprocal. The healing of that land could not be done in one season, or by one person, or a even few people no matter how optimistic or good intentioned. Healing work is the work of many, maybe all of us, to reorient ourselves and reconnect with right relationship to our mother, the earth, ourselves and our future. To reclaim our work not only as stewards, guardians and devotees to the land, but rekindle practices that actually generate and nourish life as part of our daily way. I was happy with my harvest baskets full, but heavy with the burden that the hill ahead to health of our world is steep to climb.
This winter took me deep, down underground into the soil of my soul, reckoning and reorienting to my path ahead. It became clear, that my work has always been of a mother, a teacher and a community member. No amount of produce from my garden would feed the world, and not only could my body not keep up with those efforts, but my heart couldn’t either. It was time to go back, to re-enter the world, with seeds and soil clasped in my fists. I had to do what I have always done, to teach my people to grow.
As this spring emerged, and the seeds started to sprout, so did a new website, a short film, a plant sale and new opportunities to return to my original instructions, and to Grow Home. This season I will focus on growing more medicine and flowers and, of course, food on the tiny plot of land where we live. I will reinvest my energy here to really make it bloom to its greatest capacity instead of stretching out to farm dry land without enough resources and only 2 scheduled water releases this summer!! I have to really evaluate what is the best use of my resources and what is the best use of this valleys precious water. Though I will miss that spacious abundance, and those long, lovely rows of beautiful rows of cabbages and marigolds, that land does not belong and so we are not in that marriage of stewardship and commitment for the long haul. I have learned my sweat and seeds are in it for the long haul, for generations ahead of me, to heal what generations behind have not and still crossing my fingers that someday I will find a piece of land I can live on, plant on pray, on sing on, and steward for a good long while. Seeds are patient and so am I.
This season of my life I will also step more into helping others seeking to know their land, to learn how to bring what they steward to life while it brings them life. To help people Re-member their relationship to their Growing Home.
After 20 years of being a garden teacher and consultant I finally have an official place to share my offerings and myself as a garden guide. As with all things with me, it is a work in progress. But I finally feel like in this next season of my life, while the children play, I will be able to bring my work, offerings, and garden whisperings to the world a little more each day.
So my friends, “Seeds and Stones” has become “Growing Home”. That is what we’ve been doing all along, and I know now more than ever that this work of tending and supporting others to grow is my calling in life. Please continue to follow me on this growing journey and jump over to see the new site and signup for the Growing Home Newsletter. May you flourish wherever you grow home.