I have fond memories of and always enjoyed spending time in natural areas. There were trips to St. John’s Conservation Area with my grandparents. Short Hills Provincial Park, Balls Falls, and summer camping trips “up north” with my parents. Romping along trails like hooligans with my sister. Hot, sweaty portages, canoeing for hours, and the joy of jumping into cool clean lakes. Learning experiences were everywhere! Monarch caterpillars and butterflies, snakes, birds, fish, and even clams! How do you catch a clam? You’ll have to ask my sister.
Sadly, back then, I never made the connection between gardening and nature. While Grandma and Grandpa’s vegetable garden was great, it was just tasty snacks stolen when I thought no one was looking. In those days I thought Mom and her gardens, which didn’t have tasty snacks, were crazy. I always made sure she knew it.
It took a long time to germinate, but those outings with family and Mom’s love of gardening planted a seed. Gardening has become my passion, and like a garden, that passion has evolved. I’ve come to understand and respect how valuable our gardens can be to all species. Creating natural gardens has allowed me to appreciate the joy and wonder of garden visitors of all kinds and has made gardening an even more enjoyable and rewarding experience. Nature, as we think of it, doesn’t just belong in the wild and parks and conservation areas. Our yards and balconies should embrace nature too!
By welcoming nature into your outdoor space, you’re gardening for change. That change is beautiful, healthy communities for all.
Are you ready to rediscover and enjoy the beauty of nature at home?