What's your favorite thing about gardening?

dansgrdnAugust 8, 2007

Guess I'm just in the mood to talk. I've always had hobbies, and I usually get a little carried away with them, but there is something about gardening that's just special. What do you love best about gardening?

Here are a couple of my favorite things:

#1 Searching local nurseries and finding something rare that you've been looking for or something that just calls to you. Most recent things in this category:

Looking for- "Sum and Substance" (I know I'm a newbie)

found today- 3 gallon, 7 eyes, 50% off at reputable nursery $12.00

Things that call to you- Yesterday, purchased H. 'On Stage'

wasn't looking for it , but I love it.

#2 Watering your garden- There is something very tranquil and relaxing about watering, I swear my blood pressure goes down.

#3 While you're watering, having an idea of inpiration pop into your head. A design idea, a new plant addition etc.

I'm sure I could come up with more, but I'm curious what your favorite things about gardening are.

Dan

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hosta_freak(z6 NC)

Maybe just the tranquility of it. Also,the anticipation of spring,when all your hostas planted the previous year come up for the first time in your garden. In my garden,it is so peaceful,because it is so quiet,you can hear birds wings as they fly through. The thrill of finding a new hosta that you don't already have,and taking it home to plant in your garden. Just a few thoughts that come to my mind. Phil

    Bookmark   August 8, 2007 at 9:32AM
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aka_margo(z5a WI)

I also love the hunt. Finding something unexpected, especially when it's at a local nursery. A couple of weeks ago I was at a local nursery and picked up 'Lakeside Looking Glass'. The young kid running the register thought it was a plain green hosta so he gave it to me for $5.95. I laughed all the way home, and then thought I should have found out what days he works there...lol!

I also love to water my gardens and find it very relaxing. Plus it's amazing what creatures come out while I am out there.

I think it's also a sense of accomplishment. You plant something, it grows (hopefully), and it just amazes me to watch something go from a small plant to a big plant.
Jen

    Bookmark   August 8, 2007 at 9:36AM
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Janice

Hmmmm--the ideas! I'm an *idea-person* and my mind is always in design mode, whether it's inside the home or out!
Absolutely no training so what I do is what *I* like not necessarily what anyone else may think is a good plan! I'm always
pleasantly surprised when someone else does like the effects I've come up with! It's difficult to see through someone else's
eyes, I think, so I don't even try to figure out what others may like--it is, afterall, my/our garden-retreat, so if it pleases me
and hubby--then that's enough!

Also, the results ! I use to say that was the only thing about gardening I liked, but have found that once I think I'm done,
I'm back at it, tweaking and finding more ways to add more of something. Like right now, I want a water feature near
the new deck in the middle! I found something, but want more of a waterfall sound rather than a drizzle with the one I have!

I find watering very tedious! I wish I did enjoy it! My mother said it was very satisfying to her--she felt like
she was nurturing her plants! I always feel fidgety and anxious to be done so I can go do something else!

    Bookmark   August 8, 2007 at 9:57AM
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lindac(Iowa Z 5/4)

I lOOOVE watering....we are currently "hydrated" here so there is no need....but really enjoy walking around with a hose and happily do it for about an hour daily in the spring.
And I enjoy mentally moving things around...
Linda C

    Bookmark   August 8, 2007 at 10:28AM
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iowa_flower_nut(5)

I love visiting garden centers but I do like watering too. I think that is the one time that I take my time and wander around really looking at everything. Best of all though are the colorful results. I have many more flowering perennials than hostas (right now anyway LOL!) and I just love the look from the street when lots of them are in bloom.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2007 at 12:32PM
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mary52zn8tx

I love to walk into a nursery in the spring and look at all those plants. I agree about the tranquility of gardening. It is good exercise, too, but that isn't one of my favorite things! I also like to watch as plants grow and change, and there is nothing like looking at a perfect hosta. I also like to water, but I have so many hostas now that it is phycicaly difficult to keep up.
There was a similar discussion in the Texas forum. Rebecca50 proposed:
1. Gardening is a calming uplifting activity that makes us happy?
2. Gardening is like a drug in that it can be addictive.
She also shared a very interesting article about bacteria in dirt and how that cause changes in our mood.

Here is a link that might be useful: soil article

    Bookmark   August 8, 2007 at 1:07PM
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koidom(8 OR)

Not a fan of watering, if some one does my watering I'll pull weeds for you.

I think I like to take care of things that are pretty and bring me joy, critters and plants do that, but when their not doing well it stresses me out big time.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2007 at 2:26PM
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i_dig_it(z5a - Illinois)

Visiting nurseries and "hunting" for just the right plant and then finding something totally unexpected is the fun part. I don't know how many times I went with my list in hand, only to come home with nothing from the list, but numerous other finds.
I love watering too. It must be something about the water that has such a calming, yet refreshing effect.
It seems when I'm in the garden amongst the plants, all other troubles are forgotten. I love planning and plotting on what to add, what to move. I guess it's the ever changing, never ending challenge of having the "perfect" garden that drives me.

Janet

    Bookmark   August 8, 2007 at 2:50PM
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hosta-haven

I love the hunt also, but with 240 varieties of hosta, I usually come back from the local nurseries empty-handed. I have a better variety than they do!

I absolutely LOVE watering; but I don't love hauling the hose to the back of the property. I did invest in two of those Powerwind hose caddies (kind with a rechargeable battery in) so all I have to do is step on a lever to wind up.

I love digging, planting, and moving plants around. Very hard for me to leave a plant in the same spot for years. My gardens are forever changing and evolving. I, like Janice above, create my gardens upon my own whimsy, not what I think others might be impressed by. If others like it, that's great. If not, it doesn't bother me because it is for me, not them.

When I'm out in the garden, I get lost in thought. I feel closer to God and am awestruck by His beautiful creation.

Char

    Bookmark   August 8, 2007 at 3:33PM
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hostabff

I love the first flower of the season on each new plant purchased the year before ...I can never remember what the new ones look like and when they open it is like opening little surprise packages. I love the zen of weeding -- a mindless activity that simply puts you in the moment. I love visiting other peoples gardens; looking for new design ideas. I love searching out new and different garden centers...and will travel far if the place has an interesting story or specialty. I love having friends that are into "it" as much as I am and can never find enough of them to fill my need to share and learn more about gardening. And...there's more for another day...

    Bookmark   August 8, 2007 at 7:46PM
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maidofshade

I think that the best for me is watching everything grow. I love to rearrange, probably cause I like the digging and planting part best. I love to walk around and see a new bloom or new leaves appearing. It is just so in touch with the nuturing side. I like to sit and look around and dream up new plans and placements. It is so relaxing that the weeding and watering seem to not be chores at all but something that I really enjoy. When someone new sees your garden and remarks on something it seems like you get to look with new eyes. It is one hobby that has huge rewards both beauty and serenity. I would rather be in my garden than anywhere else. (and in summer and spring the inside of my house shows it) I also agree with the thrill of the hunt in the garden centers and finding just the right plant or "art piece" And usually finding a plant that catches my eye and heart and then bringing it home only to have to search for just the right spot or sometimes just an empty spot LOL. I am thoroughly hooked on gardening!

    Bookmark   August 8, 2007 at 7:47PM
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bean_counter_z4(Zone 4, Rkfd,IL)

My favorite thing isn't the watering or the weeding or the bugs. I wouldn't miss the dirt under my nails or the mud tracked onto the porch. I wouldn't mind reading a book instead of standing outside in 100-degree heat with a hose. Not crazy about shovels, hoes, pruners or an aching back. I could live without the sunburn and mosquito bites. The endless drought conditions are harder and harder to take every year. The only reason I garden is the flowers.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2007 at 11:57AM
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hosta-haven

Gorgeous rose, Bean! I can almost smell it!

Char

    Bookmark   August 9, 2007 at 4:24PM
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hostarox(z5)

I also love the hunt for something new, but like Char said, once you get to a certain # of different Hostas, local nurseries just don't have anything new to offer, unless you stumble across a multi-eyed something you lost and need to replace. I re-did a sun bed this year. When I say re-did, I mean totally. I was sick of the whole thing. I put a 5 gallon bucket over the Asiatic lillies, and sprayed the whole thing with roundup. It was a blast going and picking out new sun perennials to put there. (And before anyone squawks about me doing that--the bed was a total mess of invasive stuff I planted 12 years ago....like Lysmachia, spiderwort, obediant plant....plus it was full of bindweed I had to get rid of) Roundup was the only way to go. ;-)

I love to water, but watering here is moving a sprinkler around every hour or so while I sit in the gazebo and look at magazines or whatever.

I guess besides plant shopping, making wish lists, etc., my favorite thing about gardening is when I finally get done with a large project, and I can look at it and say, "Wow, I did that!"
Of course, when people say it looks good helps alot!

I plan things out at least 2 years to give myself time to do things right. My next venture is to create a Fairy House. I saw a website that had them, and I fell in love.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2007 at 7:44PM
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micke(6)

I don't have Sum & Substance either.. It is on my list, for some reason I cannot find that sucker around here anywhere, very frustrating, that one and Big Daddy are the ones I have been trying to find.

I love to water, that is when I just stand outside for a hour zoning, well here lately I have been also sticking my head under the water stream every 15 minutes or so, if my neighbors think I am weird that is all the better:)

My thing here lately has been to take myself to Tangled Roots Nursery and pick out "ONE" hosta a week, they are 30% off right now, I have managed to pick up 'Stained Glass' 'Spilt Milk' and 'Olive Branch' for under 12 bucks a piece, I am going tommorrow, they have about 4 left I am wanting, I know logically (gaswise and others) I should just go and get the 4 I want, but I really like spending the hour or so picking out the perfect one. The workers have (finally) stopped hovering over me, they have me figured out and they just wave me over to where the hostas are, this one poor kid had sweat dripping down his face before he finally edged away mumbling something about helping the other customers and for me to just take my time, funny.... I didn't see any other customers there, lol!! Thats what they get for sitting in the air conditioning!!!

I love just walking around looking and touching my plants, I think that is why I love hostas so much, I will get down and fuss with them, looking at the way the veins and colors are, touching the leaves on them.
I am a big toucher when it comes to my plants and flowers. My mother swears that is why my houseplants look so good, that they enjoy being touched and fussed with, if I can't touch it (Cactus, Pineapple, screw pine, ugh! force of habit to touch, not wise!) I don't have it:)

I hate weeding though, just not my cup of tea, I would rather chew glass. And the main reason is I am scared to death of snakes, I just know one is going to be hiding behind that blade of grass, sounds silly I know, but the thought of touching one or heaven forbid being bit by one just does me in. that is what I so totally love about my hostas under the pine tree, no weeds:)

    Bookmark   August 10, 2007 at 11:19PM
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dansgrdn

Somehow I got behind on responding to this post. Thanks to everyone for your input on favorite things about gardening.
I loved everone's answers to this question. Its funny how we differ on how specificly it effects us, but all agree that it is a positive and wonderful thing in our lives.I pretty much would add all of these things to my list except for the weeding, Koidom, I'll take that trade.

I'm glad I'm not the only one who loves watering. You Zen waterers out there, I'm with you. Thank you all for making me feel welcome on this forum , I really appreciate it.
Phil and Janice I loved your comments, could have wrote them myself.

Char, I really related to your comments. "When I'm out in the garden, I get lost in thought and feel closer to God". There is almost a certain spirituality to gardening. I definately feel it. There is a movie that has Reese Witherspoon in it, where here father (I think played by Sam Waterston sp?) says I'm going to church and he goes fishing. That is how I feel about gardening. Hope this isn't all to heavy.

Bean I love the flowers too. Roses are what got me into gardening. I consider myself more of a foliage guy now but here's a pic of my remaining flowers.


Thanks again, and keep posting your favorite things about gardening, Dan

    Bookmark   August 11, 2007 at 1:15AM
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hostared(Z5, IL)

Thats easy. In March when there is nothing but bare sticks and black soil. April when it awakens and you see hosta eyes and perennials emerge. May when all is awake and the garden comes to life. June, July & August...flowers and growth. Then the beauty of fall.

But I hate fall clean up!

    Bookmark   August 11, 2007 at 11:19PM
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iee41

Gardening gives me a peaceful feeling, I get up walk around the yard look at my plants and feel good about the world. It's amazing to me every year to see what mother nature does for us. Spring comes and little tiny plants start to poke there heads out, before you know it there's a large plant. Much like raising a family,I love ,worry, feed and tend to them , however they have never talked back at me,lol. .So I guess to me the favorite thing about gardening is the pleasure I get from just looking and being around plants.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2007 at 8:22AM
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flowergazer

I started gardening later in life around 30 I was never exposed to it both parents working with 8 kids. I discovered the joy on my own when I planted something and the excitement of it actually coming back and thriving.Out of 8 of us 4 are avid gardners and it has brought us closer. My favorite thing is the people you meet and the passion we share. I think you learn more from others than you ever could from a book and when you have different views it opens the mind to think out of the box.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2007 at 7:03AM
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