Tuesday, May 19, 2009

thoughts on rose bushes

I have apparently not inherited my mother's green thumb.
Sometimes it seems I bring living things home to die.
For a while Scott called my gardening patches "the plant graveyard".
But on occasion things flourish in my backyard and I am caught off guard
and filled with gratitude to whatever plant it is for just, you know, living.
There is a planting hodge podge at the front of our house.
For some reason, a climbing rose was growing up out of the juniper hedge
and even now there are some irises that are peaking their heads out of a
weedy maybe-a-hedge-type-thing-we-are-not-sure on the front walk.
I'm not sure how these strange things came to pass but they
are directly in violation of my gardening aesthetic.
I didn't know I had a gardening aesthetic.
But apparently it is that no plants are allowed to protrude out
of other plants therein and look all crazy ie:
a rose bush growing out of a juniper hedge.
So I enlisted, Mimi, my backyard neighbor's help last fall to hack away the
juniper hedge and dig out the rose bush.
And while I was doing it, my next door neighbor, Louie, actually
offered me an axe to hack out the rose since it really didn't want to budge...
and I in turn broke his axe...
because I am that strong or that inept as it may be. Luckily, he was very forgiving.
Between the three of us and a gardening hose to moisten the soil,
the rose bush was transplanted to the back yard.
And the juniper was left with a yawning jagged hole in the middle looked even more hideous than before. But I don't so much care since I have never liked juniper bushes.
They are far too pokey and filled with spider webs
and as a child I was always digging balls out of them and scraping up my arms
We (Mimi) trimmed the rose bush down to a bare stick-like plant, transplanted it to the back yard fence and then we waited.
We weren't at all sure it would live after all the hacking.
But despite our fears it began to flourish, and long whip-like branches began to grow.

And then yesterday, while Addison and I were in the back yard I spotted something.

A scrumptious rose surrouded by little buds.
And me being the person that I am, can't help thinking there is a metaphor somewhere in all this.
Because this church planting season,this baby/toddler season, this season of post partum these last 4 years, have felt a great bit like there has been some hacking going on.
There have been moments when my life has seemed unrecognizable and stripped and stick-like.
And on occasion, I have felt some great yawning holes in my spirit.
But deep in my gut, there is this hope that soon, real soon would be nice, that there is going to be a shift...some growing...some change...some beauty...that will come out of it.
And then of course, there is just that feeling that welled up in me yesterday
that has nothing to do with metaphors at all.
It was just a deep surge of thankfulness that this bush is simply alive.
And that was nice, too.

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Leslie said...

Tears! At work! Again!! :)


heather said...

Great post!!! Made me think! I'm a TERRIBLE gardener. I have a black thumb instead of a green one. I killed a hanging plant on my porch in two days flat!!!

Girly Muse said...

Aw, I love this post.

eternity driven said...

that was beautiful. I loved it.

lyndabyrd said...

I have found that of all the flowers in my garden, the roses are the most forgiving and maybe that's why I have so many! Your climber is beautiful and probably very thankful for being free of the Juniper! If you have any questions on what to do for your lovely rose just ask!

Jen said...

Ah, thank you for that. I can really relate.