My Father's Garden

There is nothing that defines the seasons of New Hampshire and New England for me more than my Dad’s garden. I could even take this a step further and say that nothing defines life for me quite like my father’s garden.

I am very blessed, as I live across the street from my parent’s home. My dad passed away a few years ago and Mom is still at the family homestead. I look out my window and see the plot of land that was always a garden. It is the very house that I grew up in and after moving 7 times, I planted myself next to Mom and Dad. The one constant in my entire life is that my Dad always planted a garden. This is not just any garden, but this was a garden that defies the laws of nature. His garden was perfect, year after year. I truly believe the difference in my father’s garden, was that he tilled, planted, weeded and harvested with love. He truly loved to garden and his garden would never dare not grow, prosper, and produce the most amazing organic vegetables you have ever tasted.

The season of spring is when he would ‘til the soil and prepare the area for planting. In life this is always the time when you plant your seeds of desire as to what you would like to ‘grow’ in your life. He would very carefully select his seeds and the areas where he would plant them. Patiently, he would plant the seeds; usually in May, but the onions would be planted in April. The asparagus bed is the first to show signs of life. When that happens, the peas would be planted . His patience astounded me at times and I wish I had his patience, but alas, I have my mothers.

Once the entire garden was planted (approximately 20,000 sq ft of land) you would see him out there each day tending it; weeding, transplanting, watering if necessary. And then miraculously the garden takes on that familiar look and shape and next thing you know the first vegetables are ready to pick. This piece of land would produce an incredible amount of wonderful vegetables that fed our neighborhood. If you lived on our street, you had to eat your vegetables!

Harvest time comes around in September, this is when we would ‘can’ all those tomatoes, make that family relish recipe, and prepare for the coming winter months. My dad would store the winter squash, onions and potatoes in cold storage for the winter. We could enjoy the fruits of his labor all year round.

His garden has been the constant in my life and there is nothing more wonderful than watching the seasons change while eating my vegetables! Spring is always a time when we look to our gardens and the four seasons of New England is a perfect time to take stock of what we have in our lives.

Since Dad has passed we made a valiant attempt to create his garden last year, it was hard work, with some disappointments on the harvest, and perhaps guilty from not coming from that place of love that made it appear effortless.

So welcome Springtime again; my sister and I are going to plant the garden; but doing it more mindfully; not trying to recreate his vision; but what is our vision? We are planting seeds for our new business at Moon River Wellness Center. We will plant and harvest herbs for the business; we will plant all the ingredients for our special Salsa that we make; we will plant enough to share; and we will plant and grow with love just as Dad taught us.

Gardens are not always physical; but at times metaphorical. What are you planting this year? What is your vision? Does it come from your heart? Are you ready to weed out all that no longer serves you? Do you feel worthy of abundance coming your way? Are you ready to share your gifts and your harvest with the world?

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Moon River Wellness Center, Pelham, NH