This is the time of year when we all give thanks
for what we have. We are obviously thankful for the health,
wealth (author excluded!), and happiness which have come our
way during the past year.
It's really the little things that make
life worth living. The best things are the simplest things
??home and love and work to do, vegetables in the garden,
and fresh fruit from the backyard tree. Lacking these, what
else can make life worth living? Having them, we need no
Gardeners sometimes forget the little things
that "soothe the savage beast" in all of us and
make life a pleasure. Things such as a sharp hoe and the
wife's strong back add so much to the success or failure
of any garden. The secret of happiness is not in doing what
one likes, but in liking what one has to do. Never let it
be said that I do not enjoy work; it fascinates me. I can
sit and watch it for hours! If you don't believe me, ask
my gardener wife!
Other small, often?overlooked blessings
include a rototiller that will start; a hose that will reach
where you need to water; seeds which will germinate; and
vegetable varieties which will produce. These are what make
our gardening life a pleasure.
But gardening is hard work, and we all
have proclaimed, "This is the last year!" more
than once during the season. But the memory of that fresh
tomato, after tasting a December green?picked tomato, will
start the rototiller and strengthen the back and determination
of most "ole?time" growers when planting time
comes again next spring. If I have heard it once, I have
heard it a hundred times ??"Parsons, we're quitting
this vegetable business! There's no money in it. This is
our last year." But these are the same growers who
call the next spring wanting to know which are the best
vegetable varieties to plant.
I am thankful for these types of people
??mainly, because they make my work necessary. But more
than that, these growers, gardeners and farmers are the
main spring of the American way of life. They are always
coiled and ready to go. I have never seen a gardener who
considers his or her garden less than perfect. By the same
token, I have never seen a gardener who wasn't going to
do better next year. I hope this determination in the American
people will never cease.
So remember ??the sweetest flower is the
one in your own backyard; the best tomato is the one YOU
grew this year; and the most wonderful people in the world
are those sitting around your Thanksgiving Day table. As
you gobble the Thanksgiving feast and ponder all of your
thankful thoughts, don't forget those many "taken?for?granted"
little things which give the good life real gusto.
I want to mention some of the "Thanksgivings
of Gardening" which all of us share:
1. Be thankful for physical strength which
is necessary to prepare a garden.
2. Be thankful for your concern that your
family enjoy fresh, nutritious vegetables.
3. Be thankful for that look of joy that
flows from your youngster when he picks that first red tomato.
4. Be thankful for an understanding family
who will eat your garden?grown vegetables regardless of
how they look.
5. Be thankful for your interest in the
very essence of all life--the plant.
6. Be thankful for the personal pride stimulated by a successful
7. Be thankful for the invaluable experience gained from
struggling to produce a garden.
8. Be thankful for the humilities of failure when we all
realize that gardening is not easy.
9. Be thankful for the vegetable farmer who does produce
a good crop every year to supply us when we fail.
10. And last but not least, be thankful for the miracle
of growth which we all, whether young or old, experience
each and every time we plant a seed and watch it grow.
I am sure that you can think of many more Thanksgiving
gardening blessings. I would encourage you and your family
to do so. We often tend to overlook the blessings with which
we are most familiar.