I lost my mother recently and had the honor of being with her as she passed. I was grateful to have been there, with my daughter, for her final moments. My thoughts turned to how she had been present for my first breath and I, her last. A wise friend remarked that although it was the end of this life, perhaps it was also the beginning of another.
As a devoted gardener, I fully embrace this idea. I have observed the cycles of birth, death and birth again for twenty plus years in the landscapes I design and steward from nursery plants to maturity, old age and sometimes death. It is a miracle we take for granted that every spring, after the harsh winter months, buds swell again with new life.
We tend to worship the peak moments in our gardens, but every phase has its beauty and place in the cycle of life. Conception, birth, growth, maturity, decline, death – each has an equal moment in time and space.
As we race into another spring planting season, let’s collectively push the pause button to honor the vast continuum of life. And to consider that death isn’t good or bad, it just is. Fortunately for those of us that love landscapes and gardening, we have in our own gardens an amazing visual and sensual illustration of how this all works. All you have to do is step out of doors, breathe and open your eyes.
The Suburban Lot is a monthly blog that highlights topics and issues unique to the suburban landscape. For assistance with any of the above information, please contact Mierop Design, a complete resource for landscape design, installation and property maintenance services.