I don’t know about you, but for me hearing people extol my garden gives me such a boost. Admittedly it’s one of the reasons why I enjoy blogging about my gardening exploits so much. Sharing images of my plants, garden features and beautiful aspects usually results in applause and positive comments – for which I’m truly grateful as I’m sure we all are.
Yet, I noticed something quite different one evening during this week. I was out in the front garden, during twilight, dead-heading some of my roses and other perennials when I noticed a lady approaching with her young son leading the way. I recognised her as a neighbour who lives a few houses down the street but whom we’ve had very little to do with.
We exchanged pleasantries as she passed by and then she made the statement, “You have a wonderful garden.” I thanked her, as modestly as I could after hearing such an endearing comment, and then began dwelling on her remark long after she’d continued by.
Somehow it was radically different from the comments I get on my blog. Somehow I felt strangely proud of my garden and I began to scour it with a new set of eyes. This random comment had lifted my spirit immeasurably – as one can understand viewing their garden at the end of summer.
Why had her encouraging comment impacted me so deeply? As I reflected on this very question I began to understand that her praise had come from someone who had seen my garden “warts and all” – and still liked it.
When I post pictures on my blog of my garden or my plants, I get to choose what you get to see. I can photograph plants from different angles to highlight a plant’s ‘better side’. I can choose to not publish the photos of plants that are suffering or look straggly. Or, I can choose not to use any photos from my own garden and explore Flickr’s bountiful array instead – just like the one above.
And while that’s all wonderful, a positive comment from someone who can see the holes in the garden bed – or worse still, an empty bed – plus notice the rose that’s dying in the corner and the brown patch in the lawn, seems far more uplifting.
I guess that hearing a comment like this from someone who’s obviously seen my garden more than once, and more than in the twilight hours, seems to carry a little more weight. My friends also comment on how much they enjoy my garden – but they’re my friends. As if they’re going to tell me they don’t like it!
So I’m truly thankful for the praise it shall keep me going through the next two seasons until we ransom spring back from the Northern Hemisphere.
When was the last time you received a positive comment about your garden that altered your heartbeat for a second? Can you remember the comment and why it was so special coming from them?