Tuesday, March 11, 2008
Bloom Where You Are Planted
What is home but the place where we spread our roots?
I remember the day trip to the South Coast Botanical Gardens. This 87 acre horticultural Nirvana is located just 10 miles, as the hummingbird flies, from one of my nominees for ugliest spots in the universe: Los Angeles International Airport. Visually, the 87 acre botanical garden is a universe away. In the Eden named the Palos Verdes Penninsula.
It was a warm southern California morning. Strolling the hillside walkways, I became enchanted with a charming daisy-like flower. It popped up everywhere, an informal floral punctuation scattered haphazardly throughout the landscape. I wanted so badly to pluck one and pull out the delicate white petals one by one. I wanted to play as a child, "He loves me. He loves me not."
I didn't that day. But two decades later, I can just about any day. The dainty appearing flower I now know as "feverfew" must have hitchhiked home on the soles of my shoes. At first there were just a few volunteers. Now decades later, the feverfew seeds itself in any barren sunny spot or unoccupied cranny.
Feverfew blooms with abandon wherever it plants itself. And I hope that I have, too. It came to Diamond Bar, not knowing where the shoes I was wearing would deposit its seeds.
I came here, knowing where this place is, but not knowing who I would become.
Over the years I have been a student, a merchant, a community activist, a parks and planning commissioner. I have been a wife, a mother, a newspaper editor and a business owner. And in this journey of my life I feel like I am finally home. I am a gardener and a garden writer. This is where my roots are planted, and this is where I shall bloom.