Memorial weekend is traditionally the one where people in the northern states, where I grew up, feel more confident about planting their gardens. You could usually count on the fact that the frosts were now past and the ground was warm enough to accept the little seedlings and tomato shoots, so carefully tended during the last months of winter. Of course planting the garden is just a part of the process. The reward of harvesting it only comes after a lot of nurturing, weeding, tending, and watching over the tender plants until they become hardy produce, ready to grace your summer picnic.
With apologies to Eugenie Prime, I’d like to adapt this great piece about what to plant in your garden as food for thought. First of all plant five rows of “P” eas: Patience for life’s daily quirks, Perseverance for your greatest works, Politeness to treat your neighbors fairly, Passion to grow from the inside out, and Prayer to keep everything blooming.
Plant four rows of Squash: Squash gossip wherever its tendrils seek to choke the life of someone dear, squash criticism, the kind you unwittingly give and receive, Squash indifference and apathy. Squash any fear you have that keeps you stuck and doesn’t allow you to grow properly.
Plant five rows of Lettuce: Lettuce be kind to one another, Lettuce be faithful to our calling, Lettuce be grateful and unselfish, Lettuce be generous and giving, Lettuce be wise and honest, filling our heads and our hearts with grace and forgiveness.
Plant three rows of turnips: Turn up when someone needs you, turn up when new ideas and hopes arise in your spirit so you may act with joy, and turn up for life’s important moments, the kind you can never retrieve, the kind that won’t come again tomorrow.
Plant all the precious seedlings that may grow beyond your imagination…seeds of hope, seeds of prosperity, seeds of infinite joy. Water everything generously with an outpouring of gratitude for your possibilities.
It’s your garden and you can plant whatever you want. If you plant all that is good, all that makes life bountiful, then the process will surprise you, the weeding and the fertilizing and the constant care will be easy. On any given day, you get the choice. Will you plant joy, will you nurture the incredible ideas and gifts that you began yesterday so they can grow strong and healthy today? Will you let too much rain flood your spirit and dampen your hopes, or too much sun dry up all your energy leaving only seedlings of despair?
You’re the gardener. It’s a good weekend to set the vision for what you want to produce, imagine the great taste and sweetness of success at the harvest. That’s your mission every day. God planted you here for that very purpose. The old saying is “Bloom where you are planted.” I might say plant and cause all things to bloom around you. After you do the sowing in love part so you can harvest in joy, please invite me to the picnic because it’s sure to be a scrumptious repast. Oh, and I’ll turn up with an apple pie.