I’ve been pondering gardens quite a bit during the last week. There is something deep within me that yearns to stick my hands into dark, moist earth and smell its fragrance. There is something about being around plants that energizes me. There is something hope-filled about seeing the first sprouts of germinated seeds.
I live in an apartment in a big city. I am surrounded by office buildings and all other trappings of urban life. Buses thunder by my front steps, literally fifteen feet from my front door. My windows rattle when jets take off at a nearby airport.
I do not have a yard, balcony or patio for any sort of garden. Even my window sills are too narrow for a proper planter and plants scorch in the southern exposure of these windows anyway. I tried potted ferns one time in the dark recessess of my apartment, but it’s too warm and dry when I’m not at home to keep the windows open and the air circulating. Having any sort of greenery seems hopeless where I live. (Oh, and community garden plots are not within my budget at this time).
Still I have this longing….. Up until my parents’ generation, my kin have been tilling the soil since our first barbarian ancestors crawled out of the forests of Europe to settle down on the land. This call to the earth is a part of my DNA.
So, with all the talk of gardens, wild or otherwise, I found myself drawn to a garden center this weekend. I wandered up and down the rows, lusting after the geranium plantlings and herb pots. I handled glazed pottery and imagined how they would look on my kitchen table. I even considered cacti to handle the wicked sunlight. Finally, I succumbed to temptation and bought a very small window planter, a bag of potting soil, and packages of Italian parsley and Lemon Balm seeds. (I don’t know why Lemon Balm– I just liked the soothing sound of the name). I carefully prepared the soil and sowed the seeds according to package instructions. The planter is sitting on my kitchen table with slightly tilted venetian blinds to filter the light. I have no idea if the seeds will even germinate. This may be one more foiled attempt at gardening in my apartment, but at least I had to try.
I can’t afford not to.
Lori G. (c) 2007