What Vita said…

“The more one gardens, the more one learns; And the more one learns, the more one realizes how little one knows.” ~ Vita Sackville West

I feel as though I need to have the above tattooed across the inside of my arm, visible every time I head out with my gardening bucket of supplies, my head filled with grand ideas about what to plant and how.

This year, all the tomato plants and half the flowers I tried to grow from seed were non starters – not even the the tiniest of green shoots have emerged. The kale seems rather listless compared to what had grown by this time last Spring, and so are the radishes and beets. True, Spring was late to come, but I am disappointed. I had counted on my experiences from last year to guarantee a better outcome; surely I had learned all I needed to know in order to ensure success this year? Apparently not, going by what Vita said…


“The most noteworthy thing about gardeners is that they are always optimistic, always enterprising, and never satisfied…No gardener would be a gardener if he did not live in hope.” ~ Vita Sackville West

And so this morning I will stop by various garden centers in search of optimism and hope; seedlings grown elsewhere (i.e. by more practiced gardeners) will take the place of my sorry lot. I will humble myself by sharing my unhappy experience with the aim of learning what went wrong, then file away that knowledge for the Spring to come.

Once home, I will clear away the disasters in the greenhouse. I’ll add more compost, re-aerate the soil, plant, and water. Then, I can return to the rest of the garden, to water, weed, and plot my next move. After all, as Vita said:

‘There is always something else to do. A gardener should have nine times as many lives as a cat.” ~ Vita Sackville West

4 thoughts on “What Vita said…

  1. So sorry the seedlings and seeds did not respond to your loving care. 😦 Vita is so correct in each statement. We don’t garden so much at my house (I plop a couple tomato and basil plants in a small patch) but my husband loves to landscape. Currently our boxwood hedges have been removed and new boxwoods are going in. After 17 years, they needed replacing. Good luck on your journey to the garden centers.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Your experience with seedlings — or, rather, non-seedlings — is exactly why I quit planting seeds a long time ago. Nothing happens. Thus, I buy nursery plants and fare far better. Only an occasional immature plant fails to make it, so I toss it out. Wasn’t it good old Vita who stated , “Get over it. Plants die”?

    Liked by 1 person

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