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The Joys (and Benefits) of the Garden

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Whenever my grandmother visited us, she would always request a tour of Golden Gate Park to see her favorite spots. The first one was the Conservatory of Flowers and second, the Japanese Tea Garden. She enjoyed the lush landscaping of the Tea Garden, but mostly she loved the multicolor blooms bobbing in the breeze. Her smile encompassed the garden.

My mother had a blush pink rose bush arching over an arbor in our small back yard. Every day, she would go out and tend to it. “It wants water,” she would sometimes say. She was blissfully ignorant of the world around her when she was in her shielded space. She would come back into the house in a rosy mood.

My interest in gardening came late. Life kept interfering; my career, my family…. You know how it goes. But finally, I’m following in my mother and grandmother’s path. My garden is an unstructured assortment  of plants that I like: roses, lilacs, gardenias, hydrangeas, lavender, and lots of daisies. It isn’t professionally landscaped or arranged in any order except for sun loving and shade tolerant varieties in their appropriate places.

Whenever I’m feeling anxious, stressed, or just crummy, I go out to my garden. Let me tell you, pulling weeds is so satisfying!  All that yanking can deflate a lot of anger. I weed, I prune, I water and fertilize. (Shuuush. I even talk to them.) Sometimes I just walk around admiring loveliness. They bring me great joy. They also bring back memories of my mother and grandmother.

Many studies have proven the health benefits of gardening or just walking among flowers and trees. Have you tried it?

 

Emma

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