May 6, 2009

Random Acts of Gardening

A Recent Drive-By Mulching Victim.

Earlier this week, I drove by a friend's house on the way home from the store. Last month we transplanted a rosebush from my yard to hers (a mislabeled pink one was sent by David Austin Roses last spring, after I emailed a picture of the offending blooms they politely agreed to send the correct shrub to replace it this spring). Her rose looked a little dry, and she hadn't had time to get mulch spread around it as I had suggested. Since I happened to have a few bags of composted manure in my car, I pulled one out, dumped it around the rose, and watered it with what was left in my water bottle. Hubby laughed when I told him the story about the 'drive-by mulching.' What, he asked, are you practicing random acts of gardening?
Maybe so, I thought! My family loves taking walks around our neighborhood, and I have been known to water plants with my water bottle when we pass by a poor wilting thing in a neighbor's yard. Definitely a random thing to do, though I suspect many fellow gardeners have done the same sort of thing.
I also love to give away small bouquets of flowers from my yard. Pick a handful of flowers, wrap with a ruffle of leaves, tie with raffia and you've got a sweet little posy to hand to someone special. Here's one that my son gave to his school teacher.

This week our family carried out a widow weeding, which also falls into the random acts of gardening category. A friend down the street lost her husband a few years ago. I can only imagine how difficult it must be to keep up with her house and yard without her hubby to help. Last year we weeded, pruned and divided some of her plants to fill in bare spots. It was a great way to help her while teaching our kiddos about service. This spring we noticed the weeds taking over again, so we made a return trip to pull them and spread some composted manure mulch as well.
So what random acts of gardening have you given? Gardeners are a generous bunch. Whether giving away plant divisions or seeds, sharing fresh produce from the veggie garden (though handing out zucchini might qualify more as a random act of desperation than of kindness), inspiring friends with new landscaping ideas or other random acts of gardening, I love hearing about the many different ways gardeners give service. I'm happy to be a part of the gardening community and do my part to make the world a happier, more beautiful place.


  1. Hi VW! Very nice post! I take vegetable extras to school and give them to teaches and my fellow volunteers. Usually, it's tomatoes, cucumbers and herbs. I also share seeds and plants with my joga class buddies. I like that little blue bouquet that your son gave to his teacher, very lovely! Thanks for the comment on my geranium post!

  2. Hey there is nothing wrong with Random Acts of Gardening...all gardeners do it ;)

  3. Hello there VW !
    I so agree with the random kindness of gardening for others .. I have planted the shared space with my neighbor(who also lost her husband a few years ago to cancer .. he was a wonderful gardener) .. we can talk about him now without Connie feeling overwhelmed .. we talk about his love of plants and gardening .. she is so sweet to let me do what ever I want to do in our shared space .. I know she appreciates the help.
    This is a good post that should pop up again and again : )

  4. I love that you and your family helped your neighbor with her yard. I agree gardeners are very generous people. I've had people share lots of plants and divisions with me.
    I also like to share bouquets, divisions, and I've been know to pull weeds at random places. A group of us are planning to help do some yard work for a good friend of ours whose husband is going to be starting chemo.

  5. Spreading kindness is always a nice thing.

  6. Drive by mulching? Just don't start doing it at night:) It is very nice of you to help others out. I must say I've never watered another's plants, but have given many a vegetable and flower away. Very rewarding to share gardening. I sure wish you were my neighbor.

  7. That is such as good way to help. My daughter loves to take bouquets to school. I've made a lot of friends w/ my garden. My across the street neighbor has become my best friend. She has two acres and I help out once a week. We have such a great time. I even grow some herbs for my horse friends, they really love me.

  8. VW- You rock! I am so impressed. I do weed whenever i go somewhere but I can honestly say I have not mulched! I love it! I may just borrow your service lesson and have my daughter help me.


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