My friend and popular gardening author, Felder Rushing coined a new phrase; “slow gardening”. I really enjoyed reading what he had to say about this topic. After all, in this crazy time we live in, ‘slow’ seems to be a topic foreign to us, no matter what verb you put with it.
I thought about Felder and his new phrase a few days ago and several times since. My new yard has taken the ‘slow gardening’ approach. I have to admit, Felder suggests that this practice be deliberate, more of a conscience effort to step back, take a breath and relax while you actually ENJOY the garden. Hummm…that’s a concept I’ll have to get used to. Not the ‘enjoy’ part. That’s no problem. It’s the breathing part I struggle with!
Yes, I’m one of those guys who are always in a hurry to get it done. I want the instant impact just like the rest of us. However, in my gardening maturity, I’ve learned that it pays to take it slow. Feel the land. Let it grow on you for a while. Observe your landscape for a full year while you process the cycles in your mind. How’s that sound; are you buying it???
I hope so, because as much as I’m using it as an excuse as to why my garden and landscape is taking so long to get completed, it really is true at the same time. I truly do look at the patterns of the sun, observe the foot traffic, imagine how I’d like it to be, etc.
In this manner, I can design a truly functional and beautiful landscape. I can think about what I want growing there and change my mind many times before actually committing my wallet and efforts to the purchase and the planting. My design is really coming together nicely, albeit still in my head.
The front lawn is clearly a design in process. Part of the yard is torn up, another part is marked with bright orange marking paint and yet another area stages many plants that will someday find a home. Yes, it’s all coming together…slowly, very slowly. Thanks Felder.
For the complete account of Felder Rushing’s concept of ‘slow gardening’, click here.