Tuesday, May 17, 2011

The Miracle of Seeds

I woke up to a sky of dark clouds and air filled with smoke from fires in a distant wildlife refuge. The atmosphere matched my mood. I drifted from one thing to another, aimlessly. Then my husband said, "Didn't you say you were going to plant seeds?"  

"Blue Lake" bush bean seeds ready to be covered with soil.

As soon as I began poking my finger in the earth, I felt happy. The soil was moist and warm. I dropped the bean seeds in one by one, then tucked them in with earth and patted the soil with bare hands. I planted a second row of Swiss chard, my favorite summer green. It's easy to grow and lasts all summer if you keep cutting the leaves. 

Swiss chard tastes great, takes the heat and is ornamental, too.
When I began gardening, I lacked faith. I couldn't quite believe that these tiny, dry, odd-shaped objects called seeds could transform themselves into plants. In those days, I bought all my plants at the nursery, where I could see them and touch them as proof they were real.

 Now I love seeds, and prefer growing plants from seeds because I still can't get over the miracle. How does a dry little thing that sits in a paper packet for months or years know when its day comes? How do seeds know how to grow?


Donna said...

I have often pondered that and I have begun to grow more from seed as well...it is a challenge and a miracle...a sense of accomplishment and being at one with nature as life begins...wonderful post!!

Sheila said...

Very well put, Donna - "being at one with nature as life begins." Seeing seeds grow helps me trust in the processes of life far bigger than my puny attempts at control!

Kate/ Beyond the Brambles said...

I agree- seeds are amazing, and planting them never fails to turn my mood around when I'm bummed out. I love teaching children that something so small can grow into a gigantic thing!

Cat said...

Oh, I wish I had your faith! I tried seeds last fall of poppy, larkspur, and bluebonnet. My 'crop' was abysmal but I'm hoping it wasn't my fault...lack of rain probably had something to do with it. I was surprised a couple of weeks ago when a couple of larkspur bloomed. Maybe next year there will be a surprise for me in the garden!

Sheila Read said...

Cat, I agree it is disappointing when seeds don't germinate. Especially when I can't figure out why - sounds like in your case the lack of rain was a big contributor. But when seeds don't come up, I rationalize then that at least I'm only out the cost of a packet of seeds.