Tending the Plant

The Jasmine was a housewarming gift that arrived last January, already budding. The instructions attached were quite specific: 1) place in a cool room that is bright with indirect sunlight; 2) make sure the room has no artificial light coming in at night; and 3) in addition to watering, keep a tray of water under the plant to keep it hydrated. Within days, it was covering in small, white, fragrant flowers – offering just enough fragrance to notice and appreciate.

With a move to another house a few months back, I wasn’t sure the Jasmine would bloom this winter, but buds appeared in mid-January. In spite of many being eaten by my son’s cat (they are non-toxic), the first few have opened up – a flash of white on green and a hint of fragrance in the air.

Sometimes, I think that chores in general are much like tending a plant: the means for a flash of beauty to grow in our lives. The effort it takes to do this daily work is what gives us the eyes to see the beauty and the heart to love both the process and the result. Without doing the chores, perhaps no beauty would bloom in our lives; without doing the chores, we might not notice it even if it did.

2 thoughts on “Tending the Plant

  1. David Anderson

    I had a similar experience this winter with an amaryllis that was given to us as a gift somewhere around Thanksgiving. “Take care of it,” the giver said, “and it should bloom by Christmas.” I watered it, but not too much, neglected it when we went on a trip and found it nearly dead when we came home. Then when it started to grow it got so tall it tipped the small pot over. Christmas came and went. Finally in early January it bloomed. ANd–like you, I think–all I could think of was all the work and tending, and the near-deaths. And how beautiful the flash of red was in the blah of winter.

    1. Johnna Post author

      It’s amazing how such a different life form brings such an amazing beauty, brief though it might be. Thanks, David! Peace, Johnna


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