'Down the Garden Path' by Beverley Nichols is an absolute must read for all you gardeners out there!
Beverley Nichols is a brilliant, English writer of garden books from the early 1900s. This is not just an ordinary garden book that tells you what plant should be planted where, but it's a collection of funny, personal stories about Beverly's own garden. A story of his first real garden and his entertaining journey through it. We gardeners share a certain sort of humor that no other 'non-gardener' would understand. I know this as I put this statement to the test- I(gardener) try to share some passages from this book with my husband (non-gardener) which have me dying with laughter and he just returns a somewhat blank stare back at me. I don't understand how he doesn't see the humor and he wonders what in the world I thought was so funny...There you go, a perfect example.
"Until you actually own a garden, you cannot know the joy. You may say 'oh yes, I love a garden.' But what do you really mean by that? You mean that you like to wander through rows of hollyhocks, swathed in tulle...(you, not the hollyhocks), and that you like to drink lemonade under a tree with a nice young man who will shortly pick you a large bunch of roses. You hope he will take the thorns off, and that there will be no earwigs in them, because if you found an earwig on the rug in the car you would die with horror. (So should I). You like walking out onto a terrace and looking up at a wall that is covered with the pale, tipsy plumes of wisteria...to walk under arches of orange blossom, thinking the prettiest thoughts...and you may even stoop down to pick a bunch of pansies, if they match your frock. You like these things, yes.
But you do not like groveling on the earth in search of a peculiarly nauseating slug that has been eating those pansies. You do not like putting a trowel under that slug, hoping that it will not suddenly burst or produce fearful slime, and tipping the slug with gratified horror into a basket. You do not like bending down for hours to pull up hateful little weeds that break off above the root...(not groundsel, because groundsel is a lovely weed to pull up). ..but small docks and wretched things like that. You do not like these things, for one reason and one reason only...because you do not own the garden. All gardeners will know what I mean."
...and you gardeners out there, like me, will know exactly what he means! Gardening is a love/hate relationship at times. It's a trial in nerves and patience. It is dirty and insect infested at times. But it is also rewarding, beautiful, therapeutic, a creative outlet and so many other things that outweigh the 'trying times' by far! I am so happy all you gardeners out there understand!