Wednesday, May 25, 2011


I've been carving out a little bit of extra time to start some seeds. I've got marigolds, morning glories, and mammoth sunflowers started. (From the names, it doesn't look like I moved from the "M" section.) As I've been coaxing these seeds into plants, I realized something. This process is very much like being a creative freelancer.

One starts the process by collecting seeds. As a freelancer, you collect ideas. Then you sow your seeds with the best intentions. Sometimes you can give them a head start by doing extra work beforehand, but most of the time you've just got to plant your seeds and hope for the best. I've noticed that the ones that come up first are the ones collected from last year's garden. With ideas, the ones that come quickest are ones that have been based in previous experience.

Not all the seeds will take. Some of them will be duds. But this is still an exciting time, as there's lots of new life and new projects. As the days go by, the sprouts might be crowding each other out and this is when it starts to get hard. You have to pick and choose which look the healthiest and are full of the most potential and transplant them into their own containers. Sometimes they thrive and other times the shock is too much and the new seedlings die. This is where the more information you know comes in handy. Knowing things like how much light and water the plant needs, and the what the ideal soil conditions are, improve the chances of survival. As with any project, the more you know, the better prepared you are.

Still, a strong wind could blow or you could drop the tray and ruin the lot. Sometimes you're lucky; with hard work and nurturing, the plants grow strong and beautiful. As they mature, they create more seeds to be planted next year or that can be traded with other gardeners.

The best is when you walk out into your garden and you are surrounded by the beauty of your efforts – a design unique and shaped by the actions of our lives.


Cynthia Thornton said...

I love this post! Its a very good analogy between creativity and gardening. Although I think gardening never strained my eyes so much as working at all hours of the night.

hint said...

I just love the beginning when a seed starts sprouting taking shape. What fun! That's so cool that you've seen a difference in the ones collected from the garden before. I love this idea you've posed "the ones that come quickest are the ones that have been based in previous experience." I'd like to curl up in that thought today. Thank you!