I left my children in the big, unpredictable, cold world today on their own to face the elements alone, far from my protective care. Let me tell you it wasn’t easy. We’ve been together for a while now. I felt close to each one. Why does it have to be this way? Why? Can’t I just keep them at home, enjoying their perky ways, their bright, happy appearance? Honestly, they add so much to our family. The place seems empty, a little duller with them gone. I’m not sure what I’m going to do with myself.
I’m talking about my plants, the lettuce and broccoli and bok choi I started from seed. I planted them outside today, broccoli here at home and most of the rest at Jones. They all looked beautiful, red leaf lettuce, bright green Buttercrunch, red and green mottled Speckled Trout Romaine lettuce, with the bluish green broccoli and dull green bok choi. I was so proud. I didn’t plant in rows, casting them into the world in predictable lines. Oh no. Any plant I nurture will march to the beat of its own drummer, of my drummer, actually. I planted them in patterns, painting them on the soil which is my palette. I want my gardens to look artistic and be beautiful expressions of what I feel and see and hear, not conformist straight lines which aren’t needed anyway in such a small garden. When I was done I admired my handiwork, hesitant to leave. Go ahead and laugh but I had a real sense of feeling nervous for them, similar to how I felt leaving a son or daughter at college. You put a lot of work and time and most of all emotion and passion into whatever you send into the world. Children and plants are fraught with significance. They carry quite a burden.
I’m pretty sure the temperatures will be o.k. now. It shouldn’t get too freezing for my dear ones. At least I don’t think it will. But that’s just the thing, doggone it. You just don’t know what, exactly, is gonna happen out there. But the time comes when you have to hold your breath and kick ’em out. Then pray.
And besides, I really needed to plant them. It was time for them to go. Not only were they getting too big, I needed to make room for tomato and pepper and eggplant and other warm weather seeds which I’ll plant over the next few days so I can transplant to the garden in a month and a half or so.