By Deb Avery
The lush greenness of the trees, shrubs and plants surround me on three sides.
Even though the front yard is open it is lined with trees across the road from me.
During the summer I am very secluded—and I love it. The empath and introvert in me needs this sacred space, this humble, wild piece of Mother Earth where I reside.
I come from, and still remain in, humble settings. The yards and garden are small and not overly manicured, dainty or formal, yet I am as grateful and pleased as those with the large, exquisite, botanical gardens we see in magazines and on TV. I am a simple person with simple wishes and needs. Nature and her many bounties are much of what I require.
The bees, butterflies, and other creatures who inhabit this humble wildness, seem to be as happy and carefree as I am myself. They need not worry about pesticides or the destruction of their homes by my hand.
Here in this little part of the world, two magical acres of wildwood, Nature takes care of herself and us in her many awesome ways.
The spiders know that I will allow them refuge in and among the plants and flowers and they guard the buds and leaves like a beloved family dog guards it’s home and family. The webs to me are magical and intricate, not a nuisance or eyesore to be dismantled and brushed aside. The spiders themselves add to the beauty of the garden, especially the more colorful ones such as the Orb Spider.
But even the large, furry Wolf Spider is adorable in its own special way.
The lizards and frogs are wonderful companions and I can be found having a conversation or perhaps even singing to them at times. They are great company and also help by taking care of the more voracious insects that like to eat the garden delectables.
On the other hand, I have been known to plant lots of dill as a special treat for hungry caterpillars. The full grown dill lasted for about four days, but the gloriously abundant Swallowtails graced me with their company all summer that year.
The rat snake that lives in the Snow on the Mountain (a varigated, green and white ivy) does its share of pest control as well. As does the garden snake that inhabits the rocks and English Ivy in the shade, on the other side of the yard. The hawks and other predators do their job of preventing an overpopulation of the snakes.
The many birds are such a treat to the eyes and ears as they fly in and out of the trees to nibble on birdseed, drink and bathe in the many birdbaths and shallow containers throughout the backyard. Their birdsong is the first thing I hear in the mornings during Spring and Summer.
Just as beautiful as any orchestra of man, they serenade me throughout the day. They also keep the bugs, crickets and grasshoppers under watch and at a healthy level.
The bats who roost in the caves below my home do a wonderful job with mosquito control as they swoop and circle the security light from dusk to just before dawn. Flying back to the bat caves with full tummies and tired, leathery wings. To me they are much like tiny dogs with wings what with their cute little furry faces and pointy ears.
I would love to say I have never injured anything in this peaceful little world, or been injured myself. But such is nature and life, that sometimes, through accidents, fear, or invasions—stings, swats, capture, re-homing—and even death occurs.
Such is life.
We all live our cycles and we all know at some point we must pass on. Yet like the pebble tossed into the pond, our actions and deeds ripple out affecting all those around us as the cycle always continues on.
I guess you can say I’m a hermit of sorts, a true Crone. But instead of using a house made of gingerbread to lure in children for a feast, I much prefer to use milkweed, bee balm and herbs to draw the creatures of Nature to share in my humble little wildwoods.
One really hasn’t lived until one has watched in amusement as the bumble bees and hummingbirds become inebriated on the sweet nectar of Scarlet Monarda.
Editor: Dana Gornall
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