EARTH DAY

The Green Thumbs received our garden assignment on April 22, which is Earth Day.

We’re in the perfect spot, garden No. 6, which is in the middle of the other rented plots.

So far, we have only met one neighbor. He introduced himself yesterday when we planted our first crops. He was surprised to see four adults and six kids gathered with rakes, shovels, spades, buckets, watering cans, vegetables plants, herbs and Marigolds.

“You have so many people to plant one small garden!” he said.

Most people in our area wait for Mother’s Day to pass before they plant. This way they can be confident that no frost is in the forecast so their plants will be protected.

We took advantage of a beautiful weekend and decided to plant early before three days of rain.

Today, on the drive home after school, my fifth grader asked me to swing by the garden.

”We only planted it less than 24 hours ago,” I said, but I wanted to see it, too.

When we drove up, birds were in the fields, but away from our garden. A gentle spring rain gave the dirt a nice brown color contrasted with the small green plants and yellow Marigolds we strategically placed yesterday hoping to ward off bugs and critters.

“I guess the gardens are grown on the honor system, so no one will take our vegetables,” my son said, looking at our plot of earth through his passenger-side window.

“That’s right,” I answered.

Over the years, my kids have planted trees, read stories and learned about recycling to commemorate Earth Day. But this year, unwittingly, the adult Green Thumbs have given our children a special gift – a tiny piece of Earth to cultivate and tend.

Being gardeners presents a whole new perspective on what it means to take care of our planet. My son already feels a need to protect our spot, and he’s probably not the only child in our group who thought about the garden today.

Maybe we’ve planted a seed that can turn every day into an observance of Earth Day. That would truly be something to celebrate.

–c

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