I’m sure that would sound a little strange to some people, and rather eccentric. But I think that the fact that I have said a blessing over some of my plants and trees, both when planting and at different times over their growth period has meant a difference in how they have thrived.
I wish I could say that this is a regular practice of mine. It’s been hit or miss, depending on my state of mind at the time I plant or pass by, but it has been often enough that I can say it’s part of how I grow my garden.
Over time though, I have come to believe that it helps plants grow better and healthier, and not just plants, but a spoken blessing, or even singing over an organism will bring it more of what it needs to do well.
The Science of Talking Trees
There is scientific fact behind all this seemingly weird and oddball behavior. On the spiritual side, there is some support for the practice, as well.
Researchers have been looking into plants response to sounds, and besides the benefits on germination or growth, they are finding most of the world is in tune with sounds and we are surrounded by vibrations.
So from New Age “good and bad” vibrations to the esoteric reaches of string theory proposing the mathematical explanation for what unifies the ideas of energy and matter, sound has lots of implications for the health and well being of living organisms.
I don’t pretend to understand all the theories or research, but I think it makes the idea of saying aÂ blessing over your plants, and indeed your garden, to be a pretty good thing to do. Singing and talking to your plants is reasonably founded. Besides, it can make you feel good, as well.
Why not have a habit and a connection with how we respond and treat our gardens and plants with how we behave toward animals, and by extension, how we treat each other? I can’t tell you the number of people that say they are fine with animals and love them, but can’t get on well with people.
I think this is a habit of how we perceive and then act towards these things. We sing of “all the world needs now is love”, but it kind of turns out that that is more of a scientific idea than the songwriter could have possibly known. So the connection might reside inside the practice of thinking good positive things, saying these things, and keeping our attitudes and actions within the boundaries of them- as much as we are able.
Love has a Voice
Love has a voice, and we can send the sound of it to the world around us, including our plants. If we do, they grow better.
Maybe the old motivational guides who encouraged us to be positive had a kernel of truth. While it may not have held the whole answer to life, well being , and success, it certainly held a key. It seems to work with plants.
Perhaps some day some scientist will debunk the whole set of theories, but what do we have to lose? Becoming a vehicle of blessing, kindness, and love seems like a good enough result for efforts to influence our gardens, the flora and fauna within them with prayers and expressions of blessing.
I’m convinced it helped my trees! I am sure it helped me to treat the object of my blessings with more attention to care and kindness, too.
I also think that there is an ear to hear the prayers of our hearts… even though that is not quantifiable through tools of research, but the atmosphere of peace and life is something I experience day by day (and I believe the creation around does too).
The Spiritual Garden
Of course, it works the other way around far more often. My time in the garden, especially when meditating or simply being thankful in the moment of sunshine or as I catch a fleeting fragrant scent, brings me a connection with something deeply spiritual for me.
There is an old gospel hymn “I Come To The Garden Alone” which many besides myself have found to be an experience of God’s presence and communication.
Click here for the lyrics
I come to the garden alone While the dew is still on the roses And the voice I hear falling on my ear The Son of God discloses.
And He walks with me, and He talks with me, And He tells me I am His own; And the joy we share as we tarry there, None other has ever known.
He speaks, and the sound of His voice, Is so sweet the birds hush their singing, And the melody that He gave to me Within my heart is ringing.
I like the idea of a part of the landscape to be set aside for a serenity space that is conducive to contemplation and prayer, a restful place that holds sweet scents and is buffered from the outside world.
A summary of that type of garden is found in the Serenity garden description, but I don’t think it has to be an all green or restricted color garden if that is not what you like. I do like the thought of shielding it from too much noise or interruptions.
I visited Bethel Church in Redding, California and they have a meditation garden that surrounds a prayer sanctuary. Although not shielded particularly from other spaces, it has a winding walkway with Biblically meaningful plantings and places to sit, as well as spiritual quotations posted along the way. It made me feel I would like something like that in my own yards all the way across the country.
Yet, I have to say my garden has felt very spiritually inspiring even as it is. As long as I have a quiet space to sit, there are often mornings that I have taken a cup of coffee and my bible to give rest, repast, and restoration to my soul.
I feel that God gives messages through His creatures, through His creation, and that a gardened place may be created to be one of the areas that are deliberately constructed to be examples of its expression of peace and joy.