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Joy, the work of the garden

We plant gardens for all sorts of reasons, usually personal, but I invite you to consider the garden as a gift to the world as a whole. No, you don't have to post photos all over or invite people on tours. You just have to know that gardens are like altars, they have effects that go beyond their physical presence. They are, or have potential to be, places that radiate joy.

I once met a man who was convinced of the impossibility of happiness because, all over the world, there are millions and millions of people who go hungry, millions who are caught up in disasters. We are all connected, he said, and the weight of all this unhappiness is secretly crushing us.

He has a point, but if we are all connected, isn’t creating joy a truly worthwhile work? Happiness is part of the ups and downs of life, but joy is something deeper, more mysterious,. And plants, I think, are powerhouses of joy. They spring back from so many setbacks, given the chance, and they lift our hearts just by their presence.

And so, for a gardener, what better work is there than this?

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