I think I begin each new year with hope, especially in the garden. I hope that the snow will protect the tender roots and bulbs sleeping in the soil. I hope that rodents won't prey upon bark and stems. I hope that January will be cold enough to reduce populations of ravaging insects.
I find one of the biggest rewards to gardening, is the resiliance of plants. These trees, shrubs, and flowers, desperately want to grow and thrive. We've all seen trees grow around barriers and survive storms, insects, disease, and perhaps most damaging, people. How wondrous that life will prevail? The tiniest seed holds such a gift.
So, I begin this year once again astounded at the green growing things in my world. I urge you to take the time to stop and appreciate them. Take a moment to study how the ridges of bark channel the rain, how the delicate papery sheath wraps the pine needles. Stop and smell the roses, but also look at how the petals are arranged in a whorl and how the delicate thorns reflex downwards. Feel the roughness of a viburnum leaf or the velvet of lamb's ears. This world is a feast for the senses. I invite you to dine.