The magic of a garden

variety of small cacti and succulents in pots on a shelf

After having lived in small apartments/units for the past four years, helping my siblings build a small veggie garden at home has filled me with some unexpected joy.

Late season tomatoes, brussel sprouts, snow peas and strawberries. An odd assortment no doubt but one chosen by my four siblings with the haphazard joy of childhood. Digging into the dirt, my hands cradle the loamy soil teaming with microscopic fungi and insects. A whole world and life invisible to many. The spades and rakes blister our fingers and the sun beats down on our broad brimmed sunhats and we work together quietly for once. Until someone finds a cockroach and we erupt with squeals. 

I know it sounds fantastical but I missed the dirt and messiness of a garden. The sense of pride that you hare planting this insignificant seed and through love, a lot of water and sunshine, it will bloom and unfold joys - excluding the brussel sprouts of course! Being at uni and being so occupied with work doesn't leave a lot of room for caring for anything else whether it be a pet or a plant or another person.

There is a therapeutic happiness in knowing that you are responsible for a plant. There is even more primal satisfaction in munching on a vegetable flecked with grains of sand and not quite the same shape and taste as those in the supermarket and much better for it. It makes me sad to think many students do not benefit from this pleasure. It would truly be wonderful to have a community garden on the North Terrace campus.

Until then I suppose I will have to make do with my visits home and occasional planting days throughout the year.

Tagged in What messes with your head, Nature