Miss Pelican's Perch

Looking at my World from a Different Place


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Casting My Bread

The world is a mess. That’s an understatement, to be sure. Our problems are so overwhelming that it might be easy to fall into despair and think there’s not anything that can be done to fix things. The good news is that though none of us can fix everything in the world, we each can repair our small corner of it and be confident that it does make a difference.

There is an old saying that if you cast your bread upon the waters, it will come back to you many times over. In other words, I fervidly believe that if each of us do good in this world in some small seemingly insignificant way, then the effects are cumulative and magnified, and the results reach places we could never have imagined.

So where do I find my corner in this messed up world? I am finding mine in a garden. If you have followed me for a while, you know that I volunteer in a community garden that grows food for a local pantry that distributes to those in need. My creaky old knees don’t allow me to do a lot of heavy lifting or digging, but I can harvest, pull weeds, and water.

This work in a community setting has had an effect in my personal realm.   I am eating more healthfully by adopting a more plant-based diet. No, I have not become a vegan —yet— but relying more on plants for food is better for the environment.

Is my working in the garden going to eliminate hunger and poverty?  Well, at least for one person or two it may. Is my not eating meat going to end the global climate crisis?  No, but it may lead to one less cow emitting methane to the atmosphere– which might put a tiny, tiny dent in it.

Call me Pollyanna-ish, but inaction on my part is not an option for me. I am going to keep casting that bread.

LJG 2019

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/09/09/rdp-monday-fervid/

 

 


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Garden Log: Notes to myself about planting

This post has been made for my own reference, though I hope it might be useful to you as well if you do any sort of gardening. One of the reasons that  I volunteer at a local community garden is so that I can learn skills to apply to my own garden work. Yesterday we sowed corn and planted squash and pumpkins.

 

Here is what I learned:

On sowing seeds:

  • Clear away all weeds and other debris,
  • dig a furrow where the seeds will be placed,
  • put in some fresh compost, followed by fertilizer or enhanced soil,
  • press the seeds into place, distance between seeds the width of a fist, the depth twice the size of the seed,
  • cover over,
  • sprinkle with water,
  • spread a light layer of mulch

On setting out plants

  • In the cleared soil,
  • Dig a hole  the size of the plants container,
  • trowel in some compost and fertilizer,
  • mix in one small spoonful of mycorrhizal root inoculant,
  • Gently remove the plant from its container and set into the hole ,
  • Lightly water and surround the plant with mulch.

 

 

ljg 2019


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Orgulous

I learned a new word today: “orgulous”.  It is an adjective meaning haughty, proud, ostentatious, disdainful.  Based on this I took some pictures and wrote:


A Haiku:

Nasturtiums flaunt
brash colors across my yard
–Jealous salvias.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ljg (c) 2019

 

 

 

 

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/07/10/rdp-wednesday-orgulous/


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Urban Garden Log #4: A New Venture

Red Pepper Bug Deterrent

A former rector of my church, many years ago, had a vision of ripping up the manicured lawn on the church campus and planting a garden to provide fresh produce for a local food pantry that serves the poor of our community.  This garden came to be and has been an on-going venture for many years.  The rector went on to other endeavors and left the garden in the hands of the congregation.

This morning I joined the group that tends the garden.  I am an amateur:   I know nothing more about gardening except that you need good light, healthy soil, the right amount of water and a lot of energy. The garden manager, who (in her own words) has “a passion for the earth”, is patient and eager to teach individuals like me.  What I learn, I plan to implement in my own garden.

So I had my first lesson today: using a natural homemade concoction made of habanero peppers to keep unwanted critters away from the baby plants.  For nearly two hours I spritzed and sprayed all manner of vegetable seedlings with red pepper pest deterrent.  Other volunteers were working on harvesting seeds for future planting while others were spreading compost, weeding and watering. It was truly a community effort. Another marvel was the diversity of the group.  Women, men, and children of all shades and hues were working together in harmony to heal the planet and help the poor.

You can’t do church any better than that in my opinion.

ljg 2019


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Qigong in the Garden

The work in the garden continues.   Rosemary plants are in the ground, with English lavender and herbs that survived the winter being readied for planting. The orange tree is white with blossoms, and a 60-year-old lemon tree is still bearing fruit.  The other corner of the yard is still a weed jungle, but that will come to an end soon. This morning was so lovely that I decided to do a morning qigong  exercise in the middle of it.

 

And here is an example of the type of qigong that I do:

 

ljg 2019


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Bee Garden

Last year I grew a vegetable and herb garden. Some plants flourished, others did not, and overall I was not pleased with the amount of produce versus the amount of labor and water.

This year I am not growing things for myself, but rather for the bees, and eventually, when I get a birdbath, for them as well. The garden will be an evolving one, and at the moment I’m just purchasing small drought-resistant plants,such as rosemary, lavender and salvia. They are not even in the ground yet and the bees have already arrived. We’ll see how this turns out in a few months.


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Viriditas: An Earth Day Reflection

It seems appropriate on this Earth Day weekend that I spent a little time working in my small container garden. In the past, I have not been overly successful with gardening, but this time I approached it in a different manner. In the past, I would determine that I would plant a garden, and then spend large amounts of time sweating and toiling, ultimately not seeing much of a return for all the effort.

This time I am letting the plants grow themselves. What do I mean by this? All I need to do is four things: plant when the temperature is warm enough, and provide them with proper light, nutritious soil, and the right amount of water. I only spend about an hour once a week checking on them, giving them a good long drink of water, and keeping an eye out for insects and anything else that might be an obstacle to their well-being. Other than doing these simple activities, I get out of the way and leave them alone to grow. Plants, it seems, have the power within themselves to grow.  I don’t need to fuss over them

The medieval abbess, Hildegard of Bingen, who was a theologian, musician, writer, scientist, medical practitioner, mystic and visionary, had a word for this inner force: viriditas, or “greening” power. This power pulses with vitality and fruitfulness.  It resides in every living organism.  It is life in abundance.

What if we applied the same basic gardening principles to our own lives, both physically and spiritually? What if we got out of our offices, away from our computers and devices and exercised in the fresh air, feeling sunlight on our faces, eating nutritious food, and drinking lots of water? The greening power within us would heal our bodies.

Similarly, what if we disengaged from social media and all the other obstacles to our peace of mind? What if we were to take time to pray and meditate, fellowship face-to-face with others, feed our souls with things that are pure and wholesome and not negative or hateful? What if we partook of the divine Spirit that “greens” this world?

Then true healing would take place. Of this, I am certain.

Ljgloyd 2018