I believe in manure:
Growing up in Dallas right next to I-35, you wouldn’t think I’d have such a bond with nature. Although, I was in the city, the street I lived on was in the middle of the woods on a road that was dirt til was 16 years old. My father had a green thumb & always kept a large vegetable garden & beds full of flowers. My mother loved her tall green trees & said,”why would I need an air conditioner , I have trees.”
Once I grew up, I lived in apartments for 20 years – surrounded by concrete. A few years ago, I bought my 1st house & have been trying to re-create those childhood woods in a small way in my backyard. I load my car at the garden center with manure sacks & come home & start to dig. I mix that caliche clay with the richness of manure & peat moss like stirring together a recipe – turning the soil into a chocolatey brown batter . I believe that adding natural ingredients & no chemicals does a tiny bit to keep the environment healthy. After sweating & shoveling & am covered in dirt, I’ll water the yard & watch the birds come & take shower baths & then walk around the yard, eating bugs out of the soft earth. My yard might not be a showplace with a well manicured lawn and pest free flowers, but as long as the butterflies & birds stick around, I’ll keep showing up at the garden center saying – 10 more bags of manure please.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.