What is a Garden?

Published 1:53 pm Wednesday, January 10, 2018

While going about my daily morning routine Saturday, my thoughts wandered from the usual mental activity of mapping out my day. Most likely a result of “cabin fever” brought on by the unusually severe cold temperatures we have been experiencing. The snow still covers most of the ground outdoors and the thermometer is reading a chilling 5 degrees Fahrenheit. My out of doors activity list is growing longer with each passing frigid day.

While tidying up my nest I took mental note of my surroundings and a warm wave of contentment washed over me. Thankful for all of the necessities and frivolities in my life I pondered the thought, what is a Garden?

Aside from Webster’s definition the one I believe most people relate to, (a plot of ground where herbs, fruits, flowers or vegetables are cultivated), can come in many forms.

Most of us are familiar with the many different outdoor gardens that people tend to. But some of us also create indoor gardens. Indoor gardens are varied in their makeup and size, most are created mindfully and some are created without much thought, simply by executing a task like moving tropical plants indoors for the winter months.

An indoor garden can be as simple as a cluster of house plants or as complicated as a purposefully arranged grouping of plants or items for good Feng shui in your home.

Yes, I did mention a garden could also consist of “items.” A garden does not always consist of living greenery.

Material objects that have special meaning to the collector displayed with thought and care, can be considered one’s garden. Small indoor water features and their immediate surroundings could also be a garden. Rocks and minerals, books, small statuary all could be items that make up someone’s personal garden. I suspect many people have small gardens within their homes and don’t even realize it.

There are even people among us who cultivate gardens without living plants or material things. True minimalists whom devote their time and effort selflessly giving to others and improving the lives of people other than themselves for the simple joy of doing so. The gardens of these people are invisible to the naked eye and can only be seen from within.

A garden of any kind will delight the senses and provide fertile ground in the gardener’s heart and mind to be open and receptive to others around them and to feel at peace in their surroundings.

After much thought I have concluded that I prefer a much lesser known definition of the word garden. What is a garden? A garden is A FERTILE AND DELIGHTFUL SPOT OR REGION. It can exist in the home, heart or mind.

Whatever your garden consists of rejoice at the bounty of contentment it provides you.

Dawn Conrad is a columnist for The Kenbridge-Victoria Dispatch. She can be reached at conrad.gardenmuse@ gmail.com or fb.me/conrad.gardenmuse.