Some plants are blooming beyond their expiration date; a few are flourishing unexpectedly, and some flowers are missing in action. This spring I have discovered a couple of little “variances” — anomalies — that got me thinking about a couple of little lessons – that keep popping up. The good thing about lessons from the garden is that no season is ever a repeat – but a reminder God is a gracious, creative, and patient teacher even as we go over stuff I should remember.

This time last year, the winter pansies were gone – they had withered in the dry spring sunshine. This year they are tenacious – tiny abundant splashes of white, nestled in pots that are almost hidden by lush greens, blooming prolifically in this spring’s oh so wet weather and below normal temperatures. They have even out-bloomed the roses!

aging gracefully

Aging Gracefully

Lesson to Remember: Age doesn’t have to limit vitality. (Psalm 92:14) But a lousy attitude may.

This morning I spied from the kitchen window a dash of unexpected pink and white. Anomalies? Two transplanted hydrangeas seemed to have burst forth – Originally in pots, they languished  until I planted them in what I thought would be a convivial spot five years ago. I was wrong. Transplanting them again, last spring, I doubted their survival. They hid all last summer, and I thought they had given up the ghost. But NO – there they were this morning, shyly waving from their lush green neighbors, whose names I always forget.

hydrangeas 2015

Change is Normal

Lesson to remember: Change is not an anomaly and it doesn’t diminish usefulness. (See the Book of Ruth)
But obstinacy will.

Alas, however, the seeds I planted with so much anticipation in March are dawdling. Only whispers of green hint that they may yet bloom. And I forgot the names of what seeds I tossed into the soil. I didn’t follow directions, exactly: I put them in right after the last freeze instead of before. I mixed up what I knew about Maryland planting schedules, which warn no planting until after Mother’s Day, with the amateur hope that temperatures in March here in Dallas would take one more plunge. Again, I was wrong.


late bloomers

Late Bloomers

Lesson to remember: Even lack of knowledge, lack of care, or foolishness can be redeemed in God’s time. (See the woman at the well, or the woman taken in adultery, John 4, 8) But pride chokes out life faster than the wrong weed killer on roses!

Some days, when the news of the world, and confidences of dear friends is hard to absorb, puttering around the garden is like taking a little sanity pill.

The garden is the poor man’s apothecary. ~German Proverb

The anomalies in this year’s garden are hopeful helps, the same but different. The same way lessons from last year’s garden were oh so familiar and necessary!** This year’s out of the ordinary flowers may not last; I hope their lessons will – they sure are a regular refrain! Meanwhile, I will enjoy the unexpected delight white pansies are against a dark green backdrop, or on my counter; I will rejoice that plants I thought were goners are flourishing in their new location, and I will look forward to seeing bits of unexpected beauty in barren spots in our garden.  

Essential advice for the gardener: grow peas of mind, lettuce be thankful, squash selfishness, turnip to help thy neighbor, and always make thyme for loved ones. ~Author Unknown

** Editing

pansies and mint

Winter Pansies & Summer Mint

And this blogpiece was edited for all kinds of reasons I caught when reading it. :-/




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