Friday, March 01, 2019

Connecting with Mother Nature | My Summer Garden.

Today seems like a perfect day to start writing about our summer garden that lays buried under  a two-feet thick mattress of snow and ice. 

In Minnesota, US we are covered in snow almost five months of the year, but come May the anticipation of the delightful warmer seasons with it's perfumed air, melodious bird calls, bursting tree branches and seedling grows stronger.

Our May Blooms~ Pink Honeysuckle

I am going to share with you the story of how our summer garden became an integral part of the season that yields palpable results like basketful fresh vegetables, fragrant herbs and flowers but also how it helps me slow down, provides me a space to connect with something greater and completely grounds me.

Come join me into this small piece of urban land that is our summer haven.

The first summer after moving to Minnesota we watched our backyard sprout with perennials like peonies, honeysuckles, lilacs, lily of the valley with passive fascination. 

Walking through the backyard collecting seasonal fresh flowers to decorate our home was one of my favorite summer activities.

Having watched too many episodes of the British cooking show 'Jamie at Home' where Jamie Oliver strolls into his organically grown garden in rural Essex and pulls out a juicy carrot, snips some oregano and garden fresh tomatoes for his menu, we decided it was time to plan a summer garden with all our favorite vegetables and flowers.

Initially we used raised beds for the vegetables but few years back we realized we needed more space for our gardening endeavors. With planning we divided the space into blocks for various vegetables, herbs and plants based on how much sun was needed.

The initial years of tending to a garden were filled with learnings & adventures. We planted spinach, chard, broccoli, cauliflower and woke up to find the  plants chewed to the ground by a bunch of cotton tails!
Planted mint in the ground that took over the whole vegetable patch!! 

Sunny view of our summer garden~ Early June

Marigolds are easy to grow and I use them extensively for Ayurvedic face masks and for floating them in Urlis.

Maintaining a garden means hours of pulling out weeds, pruning, watering, fertilizing basically mothering the plants:-)

Kneeling in the garden, amongst the plants, smelling the dirt and pulling out the most pretty looking weeds is something everyone should experience. Its healing and invigorating! A great lesson in mindfulness as one is completely present in the task of pulling out the weed.

The more weeds I pulled out, the more I learnt about the medicinal and edible weeds like Lamb's quarters, Dandelions...its a fascinating world down in the dirt.

The experience of that first tomato harvest is a fulfilling one.

I definitely felt like Jamie Oliver, walking into my garden plucking freshest vegetables grown with love and patience. 
Nature creates magic in our garden, listen to the bird calls and the air pregnant with anticipation of the first bloom.


Amidst the busy activities of summer, there is a place of rest and rejuvenation right in our backyard.

A full view of our summer garden in it's peak glory! Lush and green.

Writing this post and sharing our summer garden story with all of you has got me all inspired to start planning my garden for this Spring. 

I encourage you to cultivate a small piece of land in your backyard or few pots in your balcony. Get your hands dirty, smell the earth, plant a few seedlings, nurture it and you will see nature quietly revealing to you the deep secrets of the universe. Try it!
A great lesson in letting go after the season has passed.

I truly believe~

'The glory of gardening: hands in the dirt, head in the sun, heart with nature. To nurture a garden is to feed not just on the body, but the soul.' - Alfred Austin 

I share my gardening adventures on my Instagram stories during summer. If you want to follow along, you can follow me here 

( Images by Arch. They are copyrighted, please do not use without permission)

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