With adequate water, sunlight, and nutrients plants do one thing well. They grow. And grow. And grow. There are those specimens we try to coax into joining our gardens, and we celebrate their successes. And then there is crabgrass, chickweed, and dandelions which love the open space between the blades of grass in my lawn. The fertilizer, aeration, and water I give to the grass enable these invaders to thrive. This week I applied a pre-emergent herbicide to sections of the lawn where the weeds were prolific last season to try and prevent their germination later in the spring. Plant tenacity is a blessing and a curse.
I am nearing the conclusion of a winter plant experiment which took place (with my wife’s gracious blessing) in the living room. I had little success from the carrots, lettuce and spinach I planted in last summer’s straw bale garden experiment. I decided to sow the remaining seeds indoors in ideal conditions to check their viability. Would they germinate with a south-facing window, constant temperature, and a glowing grow light hovering above them twelve hours a day?
What a joy to see carrot and lettuce sprouts two weeks after the November 15th planting! I’ve watched those babies do their thing while the mercury plummeted and the snow swirled outside the window. That tiny garden added color to the winter gray.
The spinach needed to eat its spinach, I guess, as the one seed which germinated promptly shriveled. The carrots have remained small, but the sliver of a carrot I tasted was spectacular. Perhaps in another month we will be enjoying a feast.
And what became of the lettuce? Last week Shawn harvested lettuce in the living room. That is a sentence I never expected to write. Note the absence of bug holes or wilt. This stuff is pure organic grown with love in compost.
Shawn applied the harvest to sandwiches in a lovely display of her culinary prowess.
And we chowed down. Eating something I grew myself seems to enhance the flavor and the experience. The success created a hunger inside me to toss some furniture and make room for an expanded operation next winter. We are still negotiating that one.
God created plants to be plants, and I love Job’s description of the inherent force of plant tenacity.
For there is hope for a tree, When it is cut down, that it will sprout again, And its shoots will not fail. Though its roots grow old in the ground And its stump dies in the dry soil, At the scent of water it will flourish And put forth sprigs like a plant. Job 14:7-9 NASB
What do we do when life events cut us down (figuratively)? Do we give up or do we recall that God designed us to glorify Him? Do we sprout and spring forth again? Adversity measures our tenacity .
That’s something to think about isn’t it?