“Those who garden become committed, to nature and to themselves. Gardening is an active dialogue with living material. It is about locality and place, about where we are, and it can be done anywhere, regardless of conventions. It brings together thinking, feeling, making, and performing. The garden is an answer to a culture in which mind and body, intellect and action are separated from each other. It exchanges passive consumption for a skilful, creative, and hands-on process, where thinking and manual work go hand in hand. Gardening provides us with empathy as a tool for maintaining healthy relationships. After all, the garden is a training ground for regeneration. It teaches respect for the soil and for ecosystems with their non-human beings, who are our fellow citizens. We learn to overcome our plant blindness by understanding that plants interact with insects, fungi, and microbes and are able to communicate through their filigree root systems.
Knowing and caring for vegetables, herbs, flowers, grasses, and trees brings utility and beauty together in a joyful activity in which effort and relaxation alternate.”
- Erik A. de Jong, On the Necessity of Gardening