Gardens: Why do we do it?

IMG_1839Why do we garden? Why do we garden? Or why do we pay someone else to garden even? What is it in our need as a human to have this kind of beauty, at any cost be it money or our own time and energy? I can only compare it to art? Why do we make or buy art? But it’s not really art, or is it? The thing about art is that it gets finished, and gardens are never finished. There is always something changing, something that needs to be clipped, something that is turning yellow from lack of iron…basically each and every one of us that chooses this undertaking called gardening is undertaking a giant project with no end. That is right, there is never perfection to a garden. There is never a “complete”. As soon as something is done, something else needs to be done. Why do we choose to have a garden? What is it about us that makes us different from the people that don’t garden? That are content with just a patio or something? But how can you have a patio without, furniture? Maybe a couple of potted plants, a tree, a view, maybe some small plantings on the edge…Oh, no, you’ve opened Pandora’s box. Good luck. How are you going to get those pretty plants? Do you need to go to a local Nursery? A Box Store? (Please don’t…, there are many locals making their living propagating and growing just what you need to give you that eye candy, soul candy that you need to enjoy your life, enhance your live with color, texture, smell. What is it? Is it worth it? The answer is a resounding “yes”, but why? I guess the short answer to that, after all of these years of gardening and also installing and maintaining very expensive gardens, is because our souls need other living things. Why you ask? There is something that makes life work living by connecting with other living things, whether it is stroking a cat, running with a dog, or smelling a rose.

But why do we need so much beauty and how come some of us can’t stop? I guess the point is not why but how. How do we balance or need for this with a quiet appreciation of it?