Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Earth Day Reading Project

Earth Day approaches! I kind of like the earth, what about you? To acknowledge the day, I was invited to participate in The Sage Butterfly's earth day reading project by HolleyGarden at Roses and Other Gardening Joys As I am an avid reader, I have been inspired to garden and live more lightly upon the earth by a variety of books.

The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett: this is my favorite children’s book of all time. When I read this as a youngster, I was captivated by the idea of a hidden garden, one that only a few children (and one adult) knew about and had access to. The garden emerging from dormancy before their delighted eyes, and mine, was exciting and beautiful. As an adult, I appreciate the idea of a garden as a healing, calming and spiritual place. I am a gardener today due to two influences.  This book is one of them.

Walden by Henry David Thoreau: I discovered this book in college in an American literature survey course.  For some reason, it struck a chord in me. Living simply in nature would be my path! I rushed out to purchase a copy, and still count it as one of my treasured books. We now live in the country, and try to live in sync with our natural surroundings. (Interestingly, my middle son read this several years ago and was equally entranced.) "I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.”

Passalong Plants by Steve Bender:  This book is not so heavy a tome, but it comes to mind when I think of garden books I have enjoyed. When I looked at for my copy, I realized I don’t own this book, but borrowed it from my mother-in-law – appropriate given the premise of the book. I love the idea that plants should be shared and enjoyed among friends and strangers. Many of the plants in my garden came from friends’ and family’s gardens, and I try to share my plants with others as well. This seems to me one fun part of being a gardener - being part of the community of gardeners.

And one final children’s book:

Miss Rumphius by Barbara Cooney:  I love the message of this book: Make the world a more beautiful place. Gardening is a fine way to do that!

I was supposed to invite other bloggers to participate in this project, but I have run out of time. So if you are interested in reading more, check the links listed in the first paragraph here.

On closer inspection, I see the Jerusalem sage is a little droopy, but still lovely!
Favorite spot in the garden today:
Despite the drought, the Jerusalem sage (Phlomis fruticosa) is putting on a cheerful show out in the front bed. No, I have not watered it this year. Not once. Not a drop. I read that this is a Mediterranean plant. Hmm. Oh well, it is doing well, and is deer resistant, a good thing since this bed is away from the house. I think I'll keep it!


  1. Wow! I'm impressed with your Jerusalem sage! No watering this year! And I know how precious little rain we have received! You sold me. I love your book choices. The Secret Garden, I think, more than any other book, is loved by gardeners. And although I have heard much from the book of Walden, I have never read it. I'll put that one on my list. Passalong Plants seems fun. And I'll have to purchase Miss Rumphius for my grandchildren. Thanks for participating!

  2. What a great list of reads! Each individual is affected by such different things. I am always interested in learning what each person selects. From your list, I am especially struck by the the book, Miss Rumphius. I will have to give that one a sounds so lovely. Thank you for participating and happy Earth Day!

  3. Now I know why there is a blog called - Miss Rumphius Rules!

  4. Oh, meant to say, mediterranean means it rests in summer (kind of like frost bitten?). When do you get your rain usually. We have hot dry summers. And cool wet winters. Normally ;~)

  5. @HG - Thanks for inviting me, it was fun.

    @Sage - So much to read - so little time. Thanks for hosting.

    @Eye - I will have to check out that blog! It sounds like we have similar weather patterns, though this winter has not been very wet. Average rainfall here is about 33.75 inches; we've had about 6" so far this year.