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We need both wilderness and gardens

If I could, I'd probably choose to live somewhere surrounded by wild meadows, nothing to tend gathering most of my food there and appreciating everything. But... not possible.

I try to spend time in wild areas as much as I can because they seem to allow my mind and spirit to expand and bond with nature in ways that they don't in a civilized place. But gardens offer an intimacy and close relationship with the natural world that's rarely possible in trips through nature's realm.

Day after day, year after year, gardens give a friendship with tulips and zucchini, earthworms and chickadees, that expands my world in different ways.

And there are challenges, of course, practical lessons to be learned about guarding plant-friends from predators and pushy plants that would overrun those smaller and more delicate. It's a partnership with nature, not just a somewhat distant appreciation.

Different, but both essential. And, isn't it lucky that we don't have to choose between them?

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