The Story of a Teeny-Tiny Fern
By Vivian C. Murray
When I moved to Seattle as an empty nester 20 years ago, the first place I lived was a below-ground-floor apartment. It had a teeny-tiny courtyard shaded by a Japanese maple with a bit of dirt on an elevation by the stairs where I planted flowers.
One day I noticed a teeny-tiny fern which had popped up under the slat of the old fencing bordering my teeny-tiny courtyard. (I eventually painted those slats bright blue.)
Since it was unheard of to find little ferns growing in dry Colorado, where I had lived the previous 13 years, I nurtured the fern as I embarked on a new life in the Pacific Northwest. The teeny-tiny fern grew. I potted it when I moved and took it with me to the next 2 houses and one condo over the following 12 years. The pots grew larger with the fern.
Finally, last year, I somewhat reluctantly planted the fern in my growing flower garden where I have lived for almost 8 years (same number of years as my grandson’s life). I knew this is where the now, very large fern, would live out the rest of its days.
The fern has flourished in the soil surrounded by all the flowers which have been planted into what was once a plot of empty, tree-root-bound and rocky soil. Flowers I have purchased, a climbing clematis with iron trellis which had been a gift from my daughter, perennials a friend gifted me from her own garden last year, flowers from my neighbor, and even a blueberry bush my late mom sent to me as a housewarming gift when I first moved in. Another neighbor, who has his own landscaping company, told me blueberry bushes need mating bushes to bloom. I now have two blueberry bushes which produce berries for the wildlife which wander by (squirrels, possums, raccoons).
A garden is never just a garden, they have stories, too.
If you want to read an amazing garden story, read about how the Findhorn founders planted their garden on barren soil near Aberdeen, Scotland. (Read about it especially if if you want to believe in fairies…)