Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Hostas and Us

Hostas and Us

We planted hostas in pots in our front yard last year hoping to keep away the animals that were munching on the leaves. It seems to have worked. The hostas had a few leaves nibbled on but not many and this season they were full of flowers! Each time I thought they were finished, new buds opened up and they are sending out shoots for new plants as well. The plants seem to really like where they are. And that is mostly in the shade.

I enjoy watching plants grow. Each season brings something to appreciate whether it is flowers hinting at beauty before they burst forth or leaves opening up to drink on the sun or even a struggling plant coming into its own. The African Violet  sitting in a pot on my kitchen windowsill is in its second blossoming, a joy for me to see.

I try not to casually dismiss each plant’s possibilities of expressing itself. I feel the same about people. We each have the possibility of offering the best of ourselves and especially in this difficult pandemic time, I hope that consideration of others is part of our social interaction. I notice lately that neighbors are waving and smiling when I take a walk, a friendly and welcome but sensitive distant greeting.

So even though I can’t individually be with everyone who follows Ferida’s Backyard, let me at least express my appreciation for my readers. I look forward to us all being healthy, productive, and blossoming once again.   

How to plant hostas in a pot:

More info about hostas:


Monday, August 17, 2020

Waving Beans

Waving Beans

On one of our trips to nowhere, we stopped beside a farm field and watched the bean plants sway in the wind. When the wind calmed down, I looked across the field and was surprised by how large it was. Sometimes I forget that where we live  and the surrounding towns were all farms at one time. Our house is on what was once an orchard. There are still blueberry farms, apple orchards, and corn fields not far away.

Normally, many farmers bring their produce to farm stands in a variety of townships. I usually love to go there, to two in particular, to pick out fresh fruits and vegetables. During this pandemic, however, I have been staying away from farm stands. I buy organic produce from local stores once a week and wash everything thoroughly before serving. The joy of shopping is diminished. It is now carefully functional.

But it is also mindful. Knowing that I can’t take food for granted at this time, I choose what we need and feel grateful for what we have. One day, soon I hope, this will be history but I know at least that I have come to appreciate the normalcy of food shopping and look forward to supporting our local farms once again.

Thursday, July 23, 2020

A Ride to Nowhere

A Ride to Nowhere

During this time of pandemic, my husband and I sometimes take car rides to nowhere to get us safely out of the house. We drive through local places we haven’t explored yet, looking at the vegetation and the houses, getting a general feeling for the area. Sometimes, if there aren’t any people around, we’ll take a short walk through a nature setting and enjoy the birdsongs that float out of the trees.
We recently came upon a local setting that was so peaceful, we had to stop.  A gently flowing lake beckoned on this hot day. Gentle waves moved slowly in the breeze. It was a welcome  environment where we could, for the moment, forget about what was going on in the world and take some deep, rejuvenating breaths.

It’s necessary to balance personal needs with a broader awareness of our safety and the safety of others. We would love to go to museums and theaters and concerts but that is not yet feasible. So we do what we can to find the positive in this difficult time; taking a ride to nowhere helps.

Former monk Jay Shetty offers help on how to deal with this pandemic: