Monday, April 25, 2016

Gardening Preparation

Buying seeds is one of the small joys of life that continue and continue.. there are always more varieties to try..

Can one grow the beautiful plant photographed on the seed packet, or will it all end in failure?

I walk around the yard and take photographs of the various plants as they are growing and make note of what is successful and what is not and perhaps why.

The homesteading friends I pass along pictures to, to find out what some of the plants are I don't recognize already established.

At this time this year I am concentrating on the herb garden, garlic, and tomatoes. As well as a variety of seeds to especially remind me of Heaven.

Michaelmas Daisy, St. John's Wort, Jacob's Ladder, Lenten Rose. . .

How well they will do after they are transplanted out of the seed trays or planted fresh time will tell this season.

The blueberry bushes were eaten down close to the earth by the fauna this winter -- was it the deer or the rabbits?

I see signs of life in two of them, there are three more that I do not see fresh green on yet. . . It was only the other day that the hydrangea showed signs of life. . . there's nothing like seeing those signs of life after the winter, when you do not know whether the plant ever will.

I've been given a lot of Marigold seeds to plant. The Lily of the Valley I planted last year and showed no signs of adapting have clearly settled in and shown their first shoots.

The arbor vitae I planted last year are doing well, the Green Giant is growing most quickly, the American one and the Emerald Green not too far behind -- after all they are starting from smaller.

The yew cuttings are growing as slowly as ever since I transplanted them to a garden bed from being overwintered in the house. Yew grows slowly normally so I am uncertain how much is the shock of transplantation or not. . experience will tell how well I can propagate these shrubs.

Jacob's Ladder...

This plant towers at over two feet tall.. it is often found with lavender blossoms, but I have seeds for a white variety. This plant's name recalls Jacob, who lying down took a stone for a pillow, and then saw this vision in his sleep, of a ladder standing upon the earth, with the top touching heaven, and angels ascending and descending upon it, and the Lord leaning upon it, who spoke to him. [c.f. Genesis 28:10]

I shall have to investigate this plant's possible medicinal uses. I am not at all experienced in using herbs for medicine so the planting of this garden and reading old and new references on herbal uses is interestingly new light for me. Fresh herbs are normally the best so I will no doubt find some helpful ones.

When I think of this ladder of Jacob I also think of St. John Climacus who wrote the Scala Paradisi, 'Ladder of Paradise' or Ladder of Divine Ascent.

'The holy virtues are like Jacob’s ladder, and the unholy vices are like the chains that fell from the chief Apostle Peter. For the virtues, leading from one to another, bear him who chooses them up to Heaven; but the vices by their nature beget and stifle one another.'

St. John Climacus

Sunday, April 24, 2016