The “Psychology of Gardening”. Did you even know there was such a thing?
It’s a slow, gradual process – kind of like evolution, so hence the title – so it’s kind of hard to detect. From my own experiences digging about in my clients’ dirt, there is soooo much more to gardening than weeding, pruning and raking. That’s the visible stuff.
There’s a whole host of invisible “stuff” going on that goes a long way to explain what drives our kind to seek out spending hours in hot sun and high humidity or torrential downpours and varying degrees of muckiness.
I sense it in the odd way people look at me when I tell them that I sincerely enjoy weeding. Sort of like they don’t know how to arrange their faces. But that could just be my imagination.
The “invisible” I refer to are qualities that one needs if they ever hope to feel like a true “gardener”. I think they are qualities that either need to be there in the first place, and/or are patiently taught by the very elements that make up a garden; plants and water, soil and sun.
These qualities include:
Adaptability, Committment, Curiosity, Humility, Learning, Patience, Proactiveness, Problem Solving, Self-Reflection, Sense of Abundance.
Having these qualities are just as important as having the right tools to do the right job the right way.
The result? Beyond the obvious physical benefits from an activity that works every muscle group in your body, are the more subtle ones; Beauty, Form, Function, Joy, Order, Peace, Pride and Safety.
Double the benefits if you happen to be both the gardener and the gardenee!
Remember that quality, Patience? Hoo Boy. Big Time. Way…. Really. That means the passage of time – a season, or two or three or….
And we tend to forget where we started from, and how far we’ve come. Because sometimes it takes a while to enjoy the “fruits” of our labours, and we’ve perhaps have had our heads down; eagle eyes looking to whisk away the smallest effrontery of anything weed-like.
Gardener and gardenee alike, please lift your heads from time to time. Stand up, stretch and take a moment to look around and see what you’ve accomplished; inside yourselves as well as in your gardens.
I take pictures of my clients’ gardens. Lots of pictures. Before. During. “After”. The caveat with “After” is that there really never is an after. There is only evolution. Plants outgrow their space, and we sometimes outgrow our interest in them and want to try something else.
So the pictures not only serve to confirm just how much you’ve accomplished, they’ll help tell your story.
And how cool is it to tell your story with bright, colourful living things!