Gather round, children, and listen well because I'm going to pass on a few words of wisdom. Not my own, but words that were gifted to me about the time we moved to Mucky Boots. Words that for some reason stuck in my head and have been proven true over and over in the four years since. Here they are:
Tidy paths and borders and edges make a garden shine.
(Pause for reflection.)
"What does this mean?" I can hear you asking. Well, it's supposed to mean that if I mow the lawn and weed the perennial beds but don't take the string trimmer to the edges then the garden looks sloppy. But it's even better than that. Tidy edges are so powerful that all your beds can be a mess but if the edges and paths are all tidy the garden still looks great.
Messy edges means messy garden. Tidy edges means tidy garden. And it almost doesn't matter what the garden itself looks like. I am inspired to express this with the following equations:
- Messy edges + tidy beds = messy garden.
- Tidy edges + messy beds = tidy garden.
As a mathematician I find this perplexing.
So, if I am feeling just a wee bit overwhelmed by the weeds in my perennial beds (it is April, after all) I can start by using the weed whacker along the border, or sweeping the path free of debris and instantly feel better. Not to mention more motivated to keep on with the weeding.
Kim asked me if I was going to use this as a metaphor for life, and I have to say I was tempted. If not for life then at least for housekeeping - as in my house is a mess but if I make my bed I feel instantly in control of the chaos. But I think, for once, this will be just a post about gardening.
There. That's it. Go tidy.