It's easy to love a garden in the springtime when every plant seems fresh and new. Every day there are new blooms, new leaves, new sprouts. And there you are, running from one springtime planting to the next—tired, dizzy, yet euphoric as the growing season begins. It's all so wonderful and exciting.
It's easy to love a garden in the summertime, too. The days fall into a rhythm of sorts. After that sprint of spring, we need a steadier beat, don't we? We water, we deadhead, we pick tomatoes. We repeat. We think the summer, the growing season, will never end.
Then the first yellow leaf of the honeylocust tree falls gently to the ground and we begin to sense another change.
Fall is coming.
In the fall, the garden starts to look a little shabbier. We can see more seedheads than flowers. The vegetable garden is a shadow of its former glory. It seems almost pointless to keep watering flowers that have few blooms left in them.
It isn't always easy to love a garden in the fall, but fall is when the gardeners' true love for their gardens shows.
Gardeners soon learn they must love their gardens in the fall if they want to have a spring in the garden. No matter how tired they are after the summer, they know fall is not the time to rest.
There is much to do in the garden in the fall. For some gardeners, those who really love their gardens, the list seems endless and the season seems short.
The gardeners who love their gardens in the fall plant bulbs, add a few more shrubs, maybe even plant a tree. They cut plants back. They rakes leaves, always returning them in some form back to their gardens, either as mulch or compost. They straighten up borders and maybe even add a few new borders in the fall because they know having those borders ready to plant before winter means spring will be just a little bit hectic.
Even as some plants die and other plants go dormant, in the fall the gardeners see life in their gardens.
They know, as we all should know, fall is the season when we show true love for our gardens.