May Editorial – “New Beginnings”

new peas My editorial this month is about new beginnings. As I watch my garden grow I am always  struck by the constant re-birthing of new plants. But new beginnings are not just found in the new plants  that form and grow. I think too of the plants that have become overgrown and straggly – no longer
showing their best face.  These are the plants that benefit from a good pruning. Some plants only need to be trimmed a little while others need to be cut right back – hard. This kind of pruning seems harsh, but as these plants begin to put out healthy new growth the benefits of the pruning become apparent.  It occurs to me however that in the hands of the unskilled gardener, this kind of pruning can devastate rather than renew. There are also plants that wilt and die simply through a lack of adequate water, while others never reach their potential because they are not getting the nourishment they need. Or they might have been placed in a position they do not like.  Every plant in a garden has its own individual quality of likes and dislikes just like us.  I remember planting a rhubarb plant and two artichokes in a spot in my garden that I had carefully prepared with compost. I also thought I had chosen the ideal spot for them. Nothing I could do, however, prevented them from developing a sad rather wilted look. So I moved them to another spot where they were surrounded by other plants. They perked up immediately.  I wonder how different we humans are to the plants growing in our gardens.

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