Garden of Desire

It was Liberty Hyde Bailey who wrote in The Gardener (New York: The Macmillan Company, 1925),

"Gardening is more than the growing of plants: it is the expression of desire."

What do we desire from of our gardens?

I've started a list of what I desire from my garden.

I desire a garden with new blooms each month, and in the growing season, I want new blooms nearly every day.

I want my garden to produce good food, starting with early spring vegetables and ending with late fall harvests.

I want it to delight me with tiny surprises like the diminutive snowdrops that spring up when there is still snow on the ground and then bowl me over with opulent displays of stunning blooms in all colors at the height of summer.

I want my garden to be forgiving when my time has to be spent away from it. I don't want it to ever look like it is tended to by an absent gardener when I'm not there.

I want it to be a poor place for weeds to grow, but a rich place for the plants I love to grow.

I want my garden to feed my soul, even if I forget to feed it with fertilizer.

I want it to remind me of the family and friends who've added to it with shared plants and shared visits.

I want my garden to be about more than growing plants. I want my garden to help me grow, too.

That's not too much to desire from a garden, now, is it?


  1. Not too much at all! You have made a great list of so many of the things our gardens are and do for us. If you figure out the poor place for weeds but rich for the plants you love you will be rich yourself!

  2. Of course that isn't too much to ask. Ask this and so much more. Dear Santa I want it all.

  3. Our garden can be a place for us to dream big and make it happen! That's why I push the envelop and plant wildflowers that might other wise prefer full sun! Happy gardening.

  4. I love how you and Liberty have made me think about the garden differently, Carol. Thank you. Making us grow as well, it is a profound thought.

  5. Oh no! Not at all.Hoping to improve my garden every year is something I always think about and pursue.

  6. I think this is a wonderful list of things you desire from your garden and very realistic. I share many of these same desires from my garden.

  7. Lovely quote. How could any gardener disagree with your garden wishlist?

  8. I completely agree with your list!

  9. Your list is perfect and well written. The garden does give us so many things...some visible and some within.

  10. Great list! Bailey was certainly one inspirational gardener. We're posting a link to this on the Liberty Hyde Bailey Museum Facebook page, to share it with our followers -- if you're ever in southwestern Michigan this summer, you should stop by!

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts!


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