Amateur gardener. That’s where I find myself these days, compared to four years ago when I don’t think I had a single plant. Our friends know us as the plant people, and we gladly accept the title. But who knew that adding a little green to our lives would have such an impact on us!
A local plant shop opened, and it looked like the cutest, coolest, hipster place to go. Everyone was visiting. So, I finally went, bought my first plant (snake plant), and it was all uphill from there! A cute Walmart cactus, a couple succulent gifts, and I was on my way to a nice little collection of houseplants. When my husband and I first started dating, instead of bringing flowers he would bring plants. So sweet!
And then, COVID.
Everyone and their dog was ordering houseplants and starting gardens. What else were we supposed to do!? Stuck at home, nothing but screens to sit in front of, waiting for the world to reopen.
I got engaged a few weeks before the virus really hit the US, planning on an October wedding. But then the world started shutting down and it felt like this may or may not be the end (nervous laughter), so we decided to move the wedding up to May. Two-month engagement! (I highly recommend short engagements, by the way. You’ll thank me later.) So as I began packing up my apartment life and moving boxes to Michael’s house, I needed him to watch my houseplants while I lived with my aunt and uncle during our engagement. “Work from home” just meant I went to his house during the day (we work together and he had wifi; I was not willing to pay for it…), so I was still able to care for my plants as well! So doing it together, this is when Michael really started to get the plant daddy bug.
While I was buying and being gifted houseplants, Michael’s interest in gardening was growing. He started with tomatoes and just had a blast working outside and reaping his first harvest! He was really enjoying the fun houseplants and cute porch plants we would find as well, so it was exciting to grow in this new hobby together.
So then there we were, newlyweds, starting to get in over our heads (see featured cover photo of directions for my friend while we were gone on our honeymoon). The amount of houseplants, garden plants, and porch plants we had seemed a little excessive. Flowerbeds weren’t even a thing until the next spring. But we continued to buy any cute plant we happened across, especially if they were cheap! We were definitely enabling each other’s plant addiction… no moderation, no accountability… $$$…
As winter came and some of our plants died off (not gonna lie, we were a little relieved), we had a hard time fitting all of our plants inside… And yet, springtime came, and we were back at it again, ready to get our hands dirty and purchase some new plants, flowers, and veggie seeds to do it all over again, just even more overwhelming. Ha!
We did an even bigger garden and this time added in front flowerbeds. It’s hard to manage when you don’t live at home during the summer (we lived and worked at camp), but thank goodness for drip irrigation…
Still, between weeding and pruning, our garden got out of hand, and we lost some flowers and plants. After replacing the flower bed plants and ripping out some ruined veggies, we were off to a better start come early summer.
What Michael and I love is seeing the Bible talk about plants and gardening, using them as metaphors for the work of Christ and living a spiritual life. It’s so encouraging and we can relate to God’s word in new ways. And now when we’re gardening, we see the Lord’s beauty, provision, and spiritual work on display. What a blessing!
Being outside getting our hands dirty, and being inside surrounded by green things helped keep us sane while being quarantined for months. Grateful for that! We just jumped in the deep end and learned as we went.
What’s funny is, my mom always had flowerbeds and tons of plants when I was growing up. But I never really helped her, never got into it. Now I love getting to see her garden and talk plants and ask questions. ☺️ So cute, and an especially special connection.
I hope you’ll give veggie gardening, or house plants, or porch plants, or flower beds a chance! Just start small and learn as you grow. 😉
If you already garden, let me know how you got started and your best tips! We sure could use them! 🙂