Plant Wisdom for Life
I can give you the seeds to plant.
Your job is to make fertile soil
& tend them so they grow strong
& fill your life with beauty.
"Plant wisdom within" -- what does it mean?
Plants are wise teachers!! Their uncomplicated lives inspire us to build simple and full lives for ourselves. An oak doesn’t try to be a rose, and yet through taking only the resources each needs to flourish, both have enough to thrive, fill the world with their unique gifts, and feed the needs of those growing around them. They show us how to live life in balance. We can use their teachings to guide our actions. These lessons from tending a garden will help you...plant wisdom in your life!!
Make fertile soil & keep it chemical-free.
Consume rich organic nutrients.
Get daily sunshine & fresh air.
Move & be flexible.
Practice staying rooted.
Keep near allies.
Call for help when new pests arise or old ones get overwhelming.
Tend beauty in your garden; its virtue balances that of utility.
Allow for rest between harvests.
Preserve what you harvest when the harvest is good.
When you have a lot to give, share it with others who don't.
Don't be afraid to build fences.
Be wild by design!
Make fertile soil & keep it chemical-free. (Plants re-use. Their leaves make compost for next year’s nourishment!) Fill your body with nourishing foods: choose organic, biodynamic, local, and homegrown! Choose items free of pesticides, pollutants, and synthetic ingredients.
Water regularly. (Plants drink rain.) Fill your body with clear, clean water. Invest in a quality water filter to stay free of damaging chlorine, fluoride, and other toxic inputs.
Consume rich organic nutrients. (Plants don’t eat high fructose corn syrup; their bodies don’t know what to do with it.) Neither does yours! Only consume foods you can pronounce. Aim for less than 5 ingredients if you’re buying something with a label.
Get daily sunshine & fresh air. (Life in the elements has its perks!) Vitamin D deficiency is a contributing factor to endless discomfort in our lives. We all need daily exposure to sunlight to produce enough of this nutrient to keep us well. Those with darker skin and those living at more polar latitudes need the most. 15-30 daily minutes without sunglasses and sunscreen does the trick!
Move & be flexible. (Rigid stems and trunks snap under stress.) This is an essential life lesson for humans, because brittle things break. Brittle attitudes don’t adjust to changing conditions around them, a source of great suffering and detachment from what is actually going on in the moment.
Practice staying rooted. (Plants with shallow roots are upended easily.) Be connected with the world you’re living and growing in, including the world of your ancestors which has helped to shape your genetic make-up. Understanding these parts of yourself give insight into where you’re coming from and can provide support when you need it.
Keep near allies. (Plants grow best when they're in a community of friends – lettuce and onions grow well together, for example – and, together, produce enhanced phytochemical strategies for dealing with pests & threats.) We all deserve nourishing relationships with our allies! Regular contact with nurturing supportive loved ones – family, friends, or both enhances not only wellbeing, but wellness. No creature in nature lives in isolation, so tend your relationships carefully. Develop your own strategies so pests don’t eat away at you. We can’t produce phytochemicals, but we have one up on the plants – we’re mobile so we don’t have to. So, it’s okay to remove yourself from a dangerous situation.
Call for help when new pests arise or old ones get overwhelming. (Plants have amazing relationships with the mycorrhizae of fungi through their root systems. They use these communication networks to call in resources in times of need – water, nutrients, etc., and have been known to send out warning messages this way, as well! ) You never have to do it all yourself. Have a network of allies: good friends, good herbalists, good spiritual advisors you can call on when the job is too big to go it alone. When used with caution, sometimes a little chemical prevention prevents a big mess on down the line!
Tend beauty in your garden; its virtue balances that of utility. We often do just what is useful or necessary, forgetting that play, artistic creation, & laughter are equally necessary and deserve our choosing every day, too.
Allow for rest between harvests. (Rotating plantings and not picking everything all at once promote long-term goodness!) Make sure you leave it enough reserve energy to produce more bounty.
Preserve what you harvest when the harvest is good. In this way, you honor what you've been given by using it wisely.
When you have a lot to give, share it with others who don't. Share with neighbors; share with strangers. It will come back to you hundredfold.
Don't be afraid to build fences. The word "no" is a great protection against those who take what's not for the asking. Leave some room for the yeses, too; don't build so tall that you block out the light & pollinators.
Be wild by design! Remember to also eat the vitality of things growing there by nature's spontaneity, not just by human design. Wild plants (things we often call “weeds”) manage the same environmental stressors we face (nearby fertilizer runoff, rising temperatures, etc.) & so can give us the benefit of their surviving these same challenges.