I’m just going to put this out there. Seed saving is ugly. If you didn’t know any better, you’d take one look at my yard and think I let my once beautiful garden go. The browning leaves I see everywhere make me feel guilty of garden neglect. Brown brings to mind forgotten, dying plants. Somewhere along the lines we’ve learned this. Green is good, brown is bad.
The bolted greens that tower and lean over my garden beds look out of place and unkempt. But I know the truth. I know these plants are not being ignored. They have not been neglected â€“ they are bearing edible dry beans, spices and seeds for next season.
Even though I know this to be true, I have to constantly remind myself of this every time I walk into my yard. School started last week and my two worlds as working girl teacher and urban farmer, collided. I see things all around me that need to be done, but there are only so many hours in the day and only so much energy to get everything done.
Luckily, nature is on my side. A long string of dry, sunny days have been ripening my tomatoes and drying the pods of seeds I am saving. Things look like they are in disarray, but really my little farm is still thriving, paying me back for all the love I’ve put into it.
I especially love my garden in June when everything is seemingly maintained, “pretty” and in bloom. I’m starting to notice now that the organized chaos of late summer, the myriad of khaki that abounds, makes me anxious. So maybe what my garden really needs is a little unconditional love. Maybe my June and September gardens are like lightness and darkness. One isn’t necessarily better than the other. Dark is merely the absence of light and without one you can’t have the other. Maybe what I need to do is adjust my idea of beauty. Maybe it isn’t beautiful or ugly, positive or negative, good or bad. Maybe it just IS. This is my garden in September and it’s harvest time. It’s kinda “ugly”, but isn’t it beautiful?!
* The song on today’s video has been a favorite of mine since the first time I heard it. So many of the silly things she sings about I can relate to â€“ most gardeners probably can. Â A dear gardener friend (Hi Amy!) shared it with me and now I share it with you! Enjoy!