Friday, April 23, 2010

I think that I shall never see...

I currently have a tiny garden of seedlings growing in front of the glass door wall in my living room. I hope that my little teeny tiny plants will grow up to be an edible garden. I planted the seeds for a variety of peppers, basil, oregano, and for the very first time...some fennel. That should be intriguing.

My dad used to start his outdoor garden indoors using a similar method.

There is something joyful about planting a seed in soil and then using only the magic in some sunshine and water to nuture them into mature living plants. Yesterday was the fortieth anniversary of the first Earth Day. I remember it very well. I was in first grade and after breakfast my mom washed out an orange juice carton for me to take to school. At school I was given a little pine tree sapling . As a class project we planted our little saplings in dirt in the cartons to transport home. That weekend, my dad and I planted the little tree in the backyard. For all I know that forty-year old pine tree is still growing in the backyard of a house on Rosevere.

Trees were one of my dad's favorite things. He could tell an elm, from a maple, from a birch. He knew all the different kinds of pine trees that grew on the Leelanau peninsula. He appreciated trees for their blessed shade in the summer, and their tasty sap that turned into maple syrup in the winter. I can remember him climbing a huge tree in my grandma's front yard to hang a swing for me in a tree. I spent countless happy hours on that swing in the summer. But my favorite memories of my dad and trees were of the many little saplings that he stole from the property that had belonged to his mother -- after she had sold it to the Feds as park land. He planted trees in several of my relative's backyards -- and occasionally I hear about the little saplings that have now grown into giant shade-giving beauties. I think the thrill of taking a little something back from Uncle Sam delighted him. And the fact that it was something as lovely and beautiful as a tree made it the perfect crime.

No comments: