Wildflowers and Squash Blossoms

I often wonder who decided what is a wildflower and what is a weed.

Every morning, as I feed the animals and inspect the gardens, I find things where they supposedly shouldn’t be such as dandelions in the flower beds, clover in the vegetable gardens, or vines running through the shrubs. I pull them up and throw them to the chickens, but the spoiled girls ignore the fresh greens. They prefer the freeze-dried bugs I toss their way and the tasty scratch that I scatter on the ground. Weeds? Pfft.

But they do love a good watermelon rind.

Back to the wildflowers.

The wildflowers are gorgeous right now. At dusk, the air is heavy with their sweet, heady scent. They are everywhere, including the goats’ pen.

Even after a good mowing, they refuse to bow out. I remember when my kids were toddlers, how they would proudly present a fistfull of mauled wildflowers picked just for me. I would happily arrange them in a tiny vase or cup and set them on the windowsill in the kitchen. Maybe that’s why I love wildflowers so much. It’s the memories they bring back.

But, again, who decided which ones are weeds and which ones go for sale at the local nursery? Isn’t “native” just code word for “this once grew wild around here?”

Then there are the vegetable gardens.

The plants are growing quite nicely. I have baby tomatoes ripening!

But my squash…bless. I had several big yellow squash awaiting maturity when I noticed a problem. The blossom end had turned black. Ugh.

Blossom end rot.

I have fought this problem before and gave up. I ended up buying my squash at the grocery store. But, I decided this time I’m going to win, so I started researching. Apparently they need calcium. I went down to the local nursery, but he doesn’t carry it. I decided to use what I had handy. I buried antacid tablets around the roots! They are simply calcium carbonate, so hopefully the solution to my problem! I also cut back some of the humongous leaves on the offending plants to better direct energy toward fruit production. We’ll see if it works.

But squash or no squash, nothing can dampen my joy as I take in all the beauty that surrounds me. Tulip poplars, asiatic lilies, clematis and magnolias are only a few of the wild and not-so-wild specimens bringing color and life to these acres.

I’m reminded of this verse, one of my favorites:

The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky proclaims the work of His hands. Day after day they pour out speech; night after night they communicate knowledge.

Psalm 19:1-2

And once again I stand in awe as I take in the diverse beauty of the land and ponds, the flowers and creatures who flitter about Arundelle Green. I look up at the skies, bright and blue just after a storm, and thank God for all the little ways He reminds us of His presence. Every bloom, every frog and bumblebee, every bean emerging from a fading flower are gifts from His hand.

God is good and generous with us. He loves us wildly, rooting us deep where He sees fit. He looks upon us, whom some might consider to be “weeds,” and declares us precious and valuable.

Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.

James 1:17

He calls us lovely because He loves us. And he adorns us with His glory.

Let that sink in today, friends. You are loved and valued more than you could possibly imagine. You belong. He has surrounded you with beauty so you won’t forget.

Eucharisteo.

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