Spacing

When our yard was landscaped over a decade ago, the new plants were so small that you could barely see them in the stark expanse of garden rock. Now the plants have matured to the point that the yard almost looks like a desert jungle. But there is still enough space between the plants to present a pleasing appearance.

If you have driven through the Oak Grasslands of California, you have seen my idea of perfect natural spacing. Here and there, the oak trees dot the rolling hills. Somehow they know not to crowd each other. One could easily imagine the Lord strolling through his creation and scattering the acorns that grow into trees. I am reminded of a stanza from “The Spiritual Canticle” by St. John of the Cross:

A thousand graces scattering,
He passed through these groves with haste,
And in gazing at them
With his image alone,
Left them clothed in beauty.

Advent Garden

My Advent Garden is a ‘sign of contradiction’. A few brave pansies and violas promise to brave the winter, as long as the temperature doesn’t fall too low at night. My Shamrocks are still a delight, but who knows how long they will last? I had to cut back the Desert Bird of Paradise shrubs (pictured upper right). They look dead now, but beneath the surface, they are preparing to offer a profusion of orange and yellow blossoms next year.

In the desert, the cold is a welcome change from the sizzling heat of summer. I miss my flowers, but I am grateful for this quiet time of waiting. I am grateful for this time of preparing for the Life to come.