Saturday, May 23, 2009

Garden Magic

We walk around everyday in our mundane life, doing things we have done so many times in the past. Too many times we go around in a daze and don't really notice life anymore. When we look closely at things or really experience them, they transform into magical moments. Simple things like weeding can be transcendent experiences if you put your mind on what you are doing. You feel the weeds grab onto the soil as you yank them out. You feel the change you are making in the plants you leave behind. You feel connected to it all.

Common Whitetail female on a row cover

Then there are weeks like this one, when it takes little effort to see the magic in the world. This week the fairies and dragons came back into my yard. The dragons are fierce protectors. They don't breath fire, but they do eat my mosquitoes. Right now I just have one Common Whitetail. Hopefully later in the season the green and red dragons will join them since they have beautiful iridescent colors.

The fairies showed up very early in the week. During the day they hide as black beetles with orange heads, but at night they show their true selves. I see them in the tree tops blinking on and off - leaving green glowing trails where they pass. I see them as I fall asleep and they whisper to me in my dreams. Their children are fierce and well loved by me since they eat the evil slugs in the garden.

Besides the advent of some beautiful mythical creatures so many more magical things are happening this week in the garden. I started cucumbers seeds. Yesterday they uncoiled themselves and started growing. I know that little seeds ought to seem more magical, but the big seeds always amaze me more. They grow so powerfully. The same day they are up their roots break out of the bottom of the block. They seem so unstoppable. As soon as I see them break the surface of the soil I quickly plant them outside in the garden.

Then there is the magic of my lilacs. I never notice the flowers first. I notice the intoxicating scent before anything else. Yesterday was their big day. I walked into the garden and smelled the most wonderful scent. I closed my eyes and just experienced it. They are so much earlier this year than last. Last year they opened on May 30th. This year May 22nd. It must be because of this weeks heat spell.

So many other magical things happened in the garden this week. The opening of the first tomato blossom. The last harvest of spinach - so much that I couldn't eat it all and had to freeze part of it. The wild turkeys walking by and talking to me. The birds eating the insects in my garden while I'm still in it. The world is filled with so much magic. Do you see it in your garden as well?


  1. Absolutely! I was thinking about the magic of the garden yesterday as I watered in a new bed. I find great nourishment and rejuvenation in my garden.

  2. Nice post Daphne. I often sit on the patio that is a few feet from the veggie patch and just watch the happens. Birds, snakes, toads, bumble bees, so enjoyable.

  3. Maggie, I always find it a good place to break a bad mood if I'm in one. I can stand in the garden and feel so much better.

    Dan, I wish I had a nice place to sit and watch the garden. Our patio is around back and you can't see anything from it. Well that isn't quite true. I can see my compost pile, but that's just not the same.

  4. Beautiful post, Daphne! (Though I don't feel quite as benignly about pulling weeds today since yesterday I was on poison ivy patrol.) Do you really have lightning bugs/fireflies already? My favorites. I'm waiting for them... Yesterday the mourning cloaks appeared and drifted majestically before me everywhere I went. And little Shiloh and I went over to our neighbor's to count the frogs in his water garden. I myself love to watch my compost bins, since our outdoor cats often position themselves on the pallet walls or atop the compost piles themselves. It's always fun to see if you can catch them at it!

  5. our friend Ben, Yes poison ivy is evil magic. I don't feel very benign about it either. I love our mourning cloaks. I've been seeing them since it warmed up a little in the winter. I haven't seen them as much recently though. Last year I didn't notice my fireflies until June. I think this year is very early because of our heat spell.