Before weeding.  Isn't it a mess?

Before weeding. Isn't it a mess?

To weed or not to weed.  That is the question.

I’m sure many of you are raising your eyebrows and thinking, “What’s she talking about now?  Of course you must weed your garden!  Otherwise the weeds will take over the vegetables and pretty soon there will be a terrible mess.”

Yes, yes.  Those facts are known.  It is the truth.  The garden must generally be weeded.  (Plus, our garden sits squarely in front of our house.  It has to look respectable for visitors.)

But I have experienced moral pondering for many years.  How can we simply, randomly and brutally pull up certain plants in order to make room for other plants?  Who are we to determine that something like this delicious and precious wood sorrel shouldn’t exist in our soil? 

Ahhh, lovely sour-tasting wood sorrel growing in between the beets and kale!

Ahhh, lovely sour-tasting wood sorrel growing in between the beets and kale!

Each plant (or weed) growing in the garden soil contains beauty of some sort.  Some have medicinal value; others nutritional punch.  Some bloom with pretty wildflowers.  Others, like the quack grass, probably have some sort of value that I can’t fathom right now.  Perhaps their roots work up the soil, breaking up dense clods.  (Just a guess!)

Some years I’ve grumbled about the morals and ethics of weeding the entire summer while diligently pulling up the weeds.

Not any more!  Instead this is the new view:  in creating a painting you choose certain colors from your palette and refuse others.   In writing, you cull your words and edit to express just the right sentiment.  (Well, ideally we edit.  Sometimes we just create a garden of words, weeds and all.)  Creation generally demands we choose some things and reject others. 

Therefore, the garden is an act of cultivated creation and weeding simply enhances that which we choose to plant.  Hope that makes sense to the readers, who probably knew this without thinking philosophically about it at all.  In other words, the beautiful wood sorrel can be appreciated and admired and loved growing along the shed.  It is not allowed in the creation of the garden.  Unless we plan to add it to our tossed salads.  Then it can remain growing helter-skelter between the more “civilized” crops like peas and carrots.  The same goes for lambs-quarter.   It shall not be plucked!

The weeded garden!  (OK, I left that lambs-quarter in.  Dinner this week.)

The weeded garden! (OK, I left that lambs-quarter in. Dinner this week.)

Not only do we have vegetables growing in the garden, we also have three flowering plants.  These were gifts to us from a friend who owns a greenhouse.  They are looking over all the vegetables to make sure everything is growing properly.

Tenderly blooming

Tenderly blooming open

I haven’t posted hardly any flower photos in more than a week, so it’s time so get up close and personal with one today.  This variety is called Rudbeckia.  It is the blooming season, you know!

Blooming wide open

Blooming wide open