This year the roses started coming in right around the solstice and after 5 years of establishing the ring of rugosa and heirloom moss roses, they are coming in with more blooms than I have baskets for. . . everyday I could fill 8 big baskets of rose blooms. Thank you beautiful earth for the bountiful blessings of the medicine of these roses.
some fossil records date roses back to 35 million years ago, but I’ve learned that the first cultivars probably originated in China 5,000 years ago. They have been iconic symbols of love and beauty and also in British History were associated in Politics in the War of the Roses.
Roses were in such high demand during the seventeenth century that royalty considered roses or rose water as legal tender, and they were often used as barter and for payments. Napoleon’s wife Josephine established an extensive collection of roses at Chateau de Malmaison, an estate seven miles west of Paris in the 1800s. This garden became the setting for Pierre Joseph Redoute’s work as a botanical illustrator. In 1824, he completed his watercolor collection “Les Rose,” which is still considered one of the finest records of botanical illustration.
Here are some views of the 64 foot rose ring. The hot pink and the lighter pink are both rosa rugosa which are often found along the seashore here in Massachussetts, so it is often called the beach rose.
This rugosa is one of the oldest in the ring, transplanted from a garden in the Berkshires 5 years ago.
We journey with the rose in the garden which means we sit and spend time in the garden with her just listening and being, watching, tasting and tuning into our senses to listen to the wisdom that she carries.
Journey to the heart with rose on Sunday July 7
Do you long to live your hearts desire? Is there something heavy on your heart or a secret hidden inside? To know one’s own heart is a primary key to awakening our global unity consciousness and raising our vibrational field to attract love, peace, pleasure and abundance. When our heart is open and functioning in the flow of possibility we are able to tap into and activate the light grid that surrounds our earth. As we us connect with our higher self we also attune to the universal love of the mother archetype as well as activating our heightened senses for passion and pleasure.
The rose ring is fully lit up at this time of year. Come join Hannah & Sulis for an afternoon of journeying with the spirit Rose as we delve into the medical and energetic qualities of ROSE.
When we slow down and listen deeply, the sacred teachings of plants can be heard. This is how herbalists and medicine people discovered many ways to communicate about the uses of herbs for thousands of years.
We will sip teas, extracts, honeys and smell the fresh flowers growing in the garden while asking the spirits what kind of teachings they have for us. Why are they here? What parts of our bodies do they have a healing affinity for? How can we be of service to their growth? Are there any messages they have for us?
“ROSE IS BEAUTIFUL HEART OPENING, HEART PROTECTING MEDICINE, WHICH IS CRUCIAL FOR THE TIMES WE LIVE IN.” -Hannah, herbalist
There will also be handouts, recipes, hands-on demonstrations and each participant will leave with herbal medicines to take for their home apothecary. This plant spirit journey is open to all, no prior experience necessary.
Cost: $44 + $5 material fee = $49 or register for all three workshops – Motherwort + Tulsi are coming next – ($127) save $20
Space is limited to 12 participants. Pre-registration is required. Please register by Friday, July 5.
I’m so excited about this next growing season! This is the 5th summer since the shovel first entered the ground back in the Spring of 2015 and as you can see from the picture, the echinacea lined entrance leads the way to the tea tent, but like any good traveler knows, the magic is not just about arriving at your destination, but the journey to get there. With the Tulsi Rose Garden first you travel up a rainbow flowered pathway. Hibiscus, galliardia and fiery nasturtiums welcome you to use the metaphor of the heat of the fire to cleanse and purify that which you do not need anymore. Like the goddess Innana who removed all of her jewelry and clothing to become vulnerable to the essence of her soul, we see the benefits of releasing our old patterns and preconceived notions to become more present and available to the energies of the current moment. Further up as you pass through all of the purple flowers you’re invited to open to your own vision and intuition. The garden is constantly teaching me through movement and poetry. She is very much like the sacred center of a woman. She likes to be approached with gentle reverence to enter her inner chambers. . . like with any good foreplay there is curiosity, openness and respect. She teaches me to bow and honor as I enter through her gateway. She shows me that the spiral is an opportunity to drop more deeply into my body and is the perfect invitation to practice earthing, grounding and walking meditation where I can really connect to the subtle energies of the earth. She celebrates when I raise my arms up in the sun breath as I walk, and as I breathe more deeply she shows me more about how my own intuition deepens and opens to the mysteries of connection to my own higher self and vision. . . often words or songs pour through me as I’m exploring the movements and connection to the garden. There is a stillness, a quietness at times with the plants, then at other times there are the songs of birds, buzzing of bees or the sounds of planes flying high overhead. This is a portal to the magical connection we have with the world around us. . . a place to enhance our senses of sight, sound and smell, feeling the air and the temperature of the nature of the day with our bodies.
This is the temple, we are the temple. . . our bodies are our temples. It is here that I invite you to drop into your own nature and become more attuned to the plants and your own intuition. It is here where we can develop our goddess nature, one of true harmony with each other and the planet. . . where we hone our skills of presence, connecting with our hearts and explore our energetic container.
The Goddesses in the Garden program is a 6 month program for women which is a training in connecting with your own intuition and connecting with the plants, specifically, tulsi, rose and lavender, but you may find that a different plant ally calls to you. We meet one day a week from 10-3. In this program we will sometimes be in the garden and sometimes we’ll be at the Sacred Sanctuary healing center where we will learn deeper practices of meditation, breath connection and cosmic alignment with the light energy that runs through our bodies.
Our foundation is to come together in circle with each other to support with spiritual practice. . . learning and deepening our skills of telepathic communication with the plants. . . as we take the time to center and deepen our own breath we become more present to listen and hold council for one another. We will share in the safety of our circle to create a container for learning healing techniques and at other times we will take our practice to the garden where we will spend time with the plants, caring for them and listening to the messages on the wind that they have for us. Having this sacred time in the garden to feel the sun, the air and to listen on the winds allows us to come more and more into alignment with our true nature and manifest the qualities we admire in others to bring more love and abundance to ourselves and the world.
If this feels like a journey you would like to explore, I invite you schedule a connection call where we can discuss how this program might help you in your life. Payment plans available. 413-212-1665
Tap, tap, tap. . . wake up hibernating bear, wake up dormant seeds. . . it’s almost time to come out and play.
This past weekend was Imbolc, the cross-quarter day between Winter Solstice and Spring Equinox, the beginning of Spring! Here in New England unlikely warm temperatures in the 50’s has been melting the snow, but we can be pretty sure that we’ll have more snow. . . just how much we don’t know!
In Celtic Ireland, Imbolc was also known as Brighid’s Day. She is known as the protector of the wells in Ireland. Daughter of Dagda, the earth god, and Boann, the goddess of fertility. They belonged to an ancient tribe of gods, called Tuatha Dé Danann (people of the Goddess Danu).
The people of Ireland hold Brighid in high esteem. It’s said that she was born at sunrise and a column of fire rose up out of her head. There are many stories about how Brigid became known as the triple goddess of smithcraft, herbalism and poetry. One story says that she broke the flame of inspiration off at her crown and threw it down in front of her to become the hearth of the home. Then she swallowed the fire and it wiggled and jiggled and danced inside her and came out through her hands as healing energy and the ability to forge metal into objects. She is known for healing with herbal teas, using the blessed waters of the well and sparking the inspiration of the mind to create a flow of beautiful words.
Brighid was so beloved in all of Ireland that people are still honoring her at holy wells, like the one at Kildare where people tie clooties to the trees next to the healing wells. Clooties are strips of cloth that are sometimes used as a rag or to patch clothing, but here they are tied to symbolize a prayer.
Brighid is particularly associated with the first stirrings of Spring as the days begin to lengthen. Soon the snow drops will emerge as our first flowers, then the crocus and soon enough the daffodils. I have a Spring Emergent flower essence blend to assist in our own awakening to the energy of Spring and to assist us as we get into gear to work with our gardens again and enjoy the blessings of the Spring days. With this turning of the cycle we are also expecting the renewed cycle of life with the new babies. Dairy cows and ewes are also associated with Brighid. Here at the Tulsi garden my friends often keep goats and Spring is the time for their babies to emerge. My first year at the farm I got to witness the birth of beautiful twin goats on April 9. . . lots of emerging energy here with the coming of Spring.
Most of the stories that we have about Brighid are myths and legends passed down through the centuries, “The Book of Invasions tells us that Brigid was the wife of Breas and had a son named Ruadan. Legend has it that the Fomoire sent Ruadan to kill Goibniu, the smith. Ruadan was able to wound Goibnui with a spear, but was himself slain in revenge. Brigid came to bewail her son, which was the first time crying and shrieking was heard in Ireland, the first keening.” (from Brigid: Flame of Two Eternities; add.org)
Although the Brighid who was known to the ancient Celts through legend was prominent in the consciousness of the people’s of those early times, in the 5th century a woman came to prominence who became known as St. Brigid. Here is an account of her from ancient-orgins.net:
St Brigid of Ireland appears
When Ireland was Christianized, the monks and priests needed good examples to inspire people to follow the new faith. They used the same method as in the other parts of the world and started to create stories which sounded familiar to the inhabitants of the converted areas. In one of these stories they described a woman who connected two cultures.
According to Catholic resources, St Brigid was born 451 or 452 AD in Faughart, near Dundalk, County Louth. She was said to be a daughter of a Druid man and a slave woman. Brigid reportedly refused many marriage offers and decided to become a nun. She settled for some time near the foot of Croghan Hill with seven other virgin nuns. They are said to have changed their home a few time, but finally the nuns lived in Kildare, where Brigid died as an old woman on February 1, 525 AD. The Catholic Church argues that the date of her death is a coincidence; however it also provides a meaningful link between the Celtic goddess and Christian Saint.
Saint Brigit as depicted in Saint Non’s chapel, St Davids, Wales. ( CC BY-SA 3.0 )
In legends St Brigid was a daughter of Dubtach. She was perhaps prepared to be a Druid, though in the end she became a nun. This was quite a popular solution for wise people of pre-Christian religions: To avoid problems, many of them preferred to become a part of monasteries and continue their practice connected with the ancient ways as “Christians.”
Like the goddess, St Brigid is associated with fire too. The first biography written about her was made in 650 AD by St Broccan Cloen. However, in the 20th century many researchers began to doubt the historical evidence for her life. The saint wrote:
”Saint Brigid was not given to sleep,
Nor was she intermittent about God’s love;
Not merely that she did not buy, she did not seek for
The wealth of this world below, the holy one.”
The stories of St Brigid have some unusual details that differ from typical early medieval legends of Christian saints. One of the strangest examples is a story of her life with a woman named Dar Lugdach. According to the descriptions these two women used to sleep together, but not for a lack of the space or beds. The name of the potential lover of St Brigid means “daughter of the god Lugh.” Moreover, St Brigid’s miracles are often strongly related to Druid knowledge about alchemy, magic, and other disciplines.
About the year 470 St. Brighid founded the double monastery at Cill Dara (Cell of the Oak) now called Kildare. Cill Dara is famous for the sacred perpetual fire that was tended by nineteen nuns. Today people around the world take it in turns to keep the sacred flame burning continuously.
In our Sophia tradition we gather together to bring in the light by celebrating the triple goddess with blessings of candlelight, storytelling, song and creating joy as we honor her and raise the vibrational field all around us.
“May you open your heart to the sun and let the light open you to new possibilities as you water your seeds”
I’m excited about this Summer in The Tulsi Rose Garden! I just finished this video from clips from the last 2 years in the garden. It’s been such a trip to see what the garden welcomes and who shows up. This July & August is all about collaboration and building community: potlucks, women’s circles and plant spirit journeys.
Meditation & Potluck Mondays in July & August
We’ll have weekly potlucks on Mondays with a short meditation just before, starting at 6:00. . . all are welcome. . . come for the meditation, just the potluck or both. Potluck will start at 7:00. If you play an instrument bring it along and we’ll have a jam afterward.
Part of the work that I do in the world is to hold space for women to heal and share our stories to empower each other. As a CranioSacral Therapist and energy healer I work with women to heal the emotional wounds of the past and write new stories to replace the habitual ones we constantly repeat to ourselves everyday.
I will offer a number of events for people to come and interact with the garden.
Red Tent Temples
Sing Your Sacred Soul Song
Tulsi Medicine Journey
Goddesses in the Garden
Some are for women only and some are for all.
Some are free or by donation and some of the workshops are for a fee.
See below for descriptions:
Red Tent Temples Sunday August 12, 2-6pm
We (myself and other sisters) will be holding space for two Red Tents this summer near the new moons. From the http://redtenttemplemovement.com website:
The Red Tent Temple Movement is a way for women to take our inner momentum, that feeling like the time is now and come forward with everything we are as women and give us a place to incubate, dream, slow down, and not have an agenda or plan. Simultaneously much is waiting for us in this not knowing place, but we need to make time for the empty space. It is also not only empty space, but woman space where we can share stories, laughter, songs, food and honor our unique cycles that we experience each month in our bleeding time and in our going through menopause and the many years leading up to it.
There is no registration for this event. . . just come on by. . . donations are always welcome, but this is meant to be easily accessible to any woman.
Sing Your Sacred Soul Song
Everyone has an inner voice and a song within. Sometimes we feel shy or have had traumatic experiences or family dynamics that have socialized us not to fully be in our authentic voice.
I’ll offer 2 one-day workshops, Saturday July 28 & August 25, 1-5pm. This is a time to come nurture your inner voice with the energy of the garden. We will reflect through writing and meditation and move some energy with vocal chakra activations to clear stuck patterns and create more space for your authentic voice to come through. We’ll co-create a safe container by exploring what it takes to help us to feel safe to express our voice. There will be many opportunities to share writing and sounding. . . and opportunities for silence and it’s always okay to pass and not share. Through my days teaching YogaDance/Danskinetics at Kriplau I worked with many movement and sounding techniques to open our body-mind to feel and resonate our own authenticity. I invite you to explore your inner voice in this fun creative environment in the Tulsi Rose Garden.
Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org so we can set up a connection call to go over any details so that I can serve your highest good.
Tulsi Medicine Journey
When we slow down and listen deeply, the sacred teachings of plants can be heard. This is how herbalists and medicine people discovered many ways to communicate about the uses of herbs for thousands of years. Spend the afternoon in the radiantTulsi Rose Garden with Hannah & Sulis in a space for using all of our senses to learn about the medicine of Tulsi and Rose. We will sip teas, extracts, honeys and smell the fresh plants growing in the garden while asking the spirits of each herb what kind of teachings they have for us. Why are they here? What parts of our bodies do they have a healing affinity for? How can we be of service to their growth? Are there any messages they have for us? There will also be handouts, recipes, hands-on demonstrations and each participant will leave with herbal medicines to take for their home apothecary. This plant spirit journey is open to all, no prior experience necessary. Cost: sliding scale $35-45.
Hannah Jacobson-Hardy, founder of Sweet Birch Herbals, is a holistic health coach and community herbalist devoted to providing western Massachusetts with high-quality plant-based medicines that are locally grown and sustainably wild-crafted.
Hannah approaches her work with compassion and an open heart as she serves a wide range of clients. She also offers herbal medicine classes throughout Massachusetts.
Hannah creates custom blended formulas and provides specifically tailored protocols that include nutritional guidance and lifestyle suggestions. All of her plant medicines are sustainably wild crafted and cultivated to ensure abundance for future generations.
Goddesses in the Garden 7 Sundays
This is the supreme plant spirit medicine journey. Over these 7 weeks together, this women’s circle will explore our connection to our inner sanctuary through a fluid movement, mantra and meditation practice to prepare us for working with the plants. . . especially tulsi. . . we will journey with the drum and have such a beautiful opportunity to tune deeply into our own heart song and bring this to the plants. . . where we are able, if willing, to receive their wisdom.
We connect with our intuition by learning to listen to the plants, sitting in a supportive sister circle and sharing some meditative mindfulness practices together. We will learn how to take care of ourselves while we also learn to care for the plants and create teas together. Please email me at email@example.com to register for this workshop and click below to pay online, if you wish.
I look forward to seeing you in the garden this summer!!!
Please call or email me with any questions. . . firstname.lastname@example.org, 413-212-1665
I’m sitting here in New England during another winter storm. . . We’ve had pretty much weekly snowfalls that accumulate and then melt in a week or so only to come back again. I’ve been a little antsy to get started clearing out the beds and starting the seeds, but snow has said, “no!” at least not yet. I’ll be going over to the greenhouse next week to get some seeds started and I do have tulsi seeds for sale. . . but as I’ve been learning with the tulsi, there is no rush because it really likes the external temperature to be consistently 65 degrees or above.
This garden has become very dear to me on so many different levels. It’s been guiding me for the past four years, showing me what to put where and teaching me about intention . . . putting my thoughts and wishes for a peaceful world forward in to the ethers. . . it is a gathering place and so much more. When the vision came through I had been thinking a lot about toroids. A toroid or torus is a scrolling energy field that surrounds objects that have a magnetic field, like the earth or the human heart. The name of the Hebrew Holy book, The Torah is derived from the two ends of the scroll which come together when rolled up. Jeff A. Benner states The word Torah comes from the Hebrew root word תורה(Y.R.H, Strong’s #8451), a verb which means “to flow or throw something”.
These images demonstrate the magnetic field produced by the earth and our hearts. As I thought more about the circular garden, I realized that it too has a toroidal field that can magnify thoughts and intentions. So I personally believe in the power of prayer, meditation and intention and that there is actually a science to the physics of the energy of our thought forms.
When I was thinking about the garden in the early days it was very clear that it was a place to gather people for meditation, music and healing and that somehow by creating this positivity in the world that it will have ripples on energetic wavelengths that we do not see with our physical eyes.
When I walk around in the garden there is a way to activate these principles and I’m happy to teach them. I will be holding meditations & potlucks again this year in the garden as well as circles for women to clear vocal blockages or stuck energy that may be inhibiting speaking one’s truth. We will also have a concert or two and I am happy to teach one day workshops about working with the garden and plants upon request.
Here is a link to a video from the heart math institute that describes the way the electromagnetic field of our hearts interact with the world.
Enjoy and may the peace of the running wave flow to you!
You reap what you sow, so it goes don’tcha know. I’’m a seed that my dad planted back in 1969, there’s five of us in all, but I was the first one to sprout. . .
This is the beginning of the book that I’m writing and I’m realizing that I haven’t really spoken much about my personal journey and why this garden is so important to me. I hope it serves other women and in turn our whole community and greater world circle.
I was raised on a flower farm in Beverly, Ma, which is North of Boston. So I get my connection to plants and flowers from my dad and my spiritual connection feels like it comes more from my mom who was a missionary in Mongolia for 10 years. She would rather read a book than plant something. My Grandmother, my dad’s mom, Nana Sweeney really nurtured my nature loving. We would take walks in the back woods and find lady slippers and pick fiddle heads and take ‘em home and stem ‘em up.
Although the first few years of my life were pretty serene and peaceful, my childhood was not an easy one. There were a lot of bumps in the road. I don’t really talk about these things too much, but they have left indelible markings on my soul that have really been informing my work with women. I won’t go into detail here, but the events that had such profound effects were being molested by a creepy man when I was 6 and then my stepmother moved into my house when I was 8 and taught me about jealousy rage, violence and separation.
A lot of my time here on this planet has been learning how to let go of attachments to the energy cysts that seem to persist in our bodies when we have gone through trauma. Coming to terms with letting go of people who mean harm to me and my own internalization has taught me how to rewrite the stories that I’ve carried in my body about how I’m not worthy or bad or should not speak up. That has been the key to transformation.
After my Nana passed on I really connected more with my spiritual journey which was not about going to church on Sundays. For me church was always the woods or the ocean or the flowers. I had started circle dancing with some folks on the NorthShore and that felt like “church” in a way. I moved out to Western Mass to volunteer at Kripalu where I started to reconnect the dots with my body-mind and spirit. Yoga and Dance really helped me to claim myself again as a sovereign being and I started to express all of the things that were inside just waiting for an outlet. I became a YogaDance Instructor, Reiki Practioner and Massage Therapist and set up a private practice in Northampton for 12 years. Creating and holding sacred space for others to do their healing work has been a very rewarding service for me and I’m very thankful to all of my clients who I’ve connected with over the years. In 2012, my dad passed away and the land that my grandparents had purchased as a homestead for our family was sold. Luckily for me in 2013 a vision of a healing garden came to me. I realize now, looking back that the seeds had been planted long ago.
The fall of 2013 was the beginning of my last year of my priestess apprenticeship in the SOPHIA wisdom school. As I sat there on the couch that winter I was dreaming about all sorts of things, gatherings of women, yurts for teaching, red tents, healing circles with plants. Tulsi was a plant that we had been learning about and a friend introduced me to the Organic India Tulsi Rose tea. It’s a fine gentle comforting tea to keep you company and nurture the soul. As I was dreaming I was thinking about gardens. I had community gardens in the past and was always led to create a circle in the center. My first journey planting medicinal plants was back in Maryland in 1996. I planted valerian, wormwood, motherwort. New Year’s 2014 I had gotten one of those artists journals, you know the black hardcover book with the blank pages inside. . . I just wrote and sketched and set intentions for how to use my energy best to create beauty and peace for myself and others on this planet that we share.
One day on the couch I was drawing circular gardens and the idea of combining tulsi and roses in a garden for healing through rituals, dance, meditation and music was born. My first blog post talks about the miraculous way that the garden came into manifestation and the kind people, Janice Sorensen and Michael Hoberman who said yes, when I asked if I could plant a garden on their land. I don’t think at the time I clearly communicated the score of the project when I said garden, but the life of the garden is unfolding day by day.
There are so many levels of peace and healing that I feel from this garden. . . the early morning garden covered with dew as the sun begins it’s rise out of the east is a different feeling than I get from when I sit in the garden on a warm summer night watching the full moon cross the sky. The healing for me comes from digging in the earth, feeling the soil and working directly with the plants as well as the beauty that is created by the flowers. We all have different sensitivities and at this time on the planet more and more people are becoming sensitive to more subtle energies. When we are mere babies we are attuned to a certain frequency that is our very own energetic signature, then life piles on events and social conditioning and the frequency gets somewhat distorted. Through spiritual practice and deep listening we are able to tune into our unique essence or Sacred Soul Song if you will. Through my own healing journey working with energy and focusing on my connection with the land and the plants I have learned to connect with my intuition more and I can sense the gentle energy of the flowers and often feel the vibrations emitted by different energy bodies. I invite you to come for a healing session, a meditation or class, purchase some rose petal elixir or some tulsi tea and begin to feel the essence of the flowers. My greatest desire is that this garden through it’s events, bounty and it’s simple existence of being creates peace, beauty and healing for myself and others.
We have already hosted several concerts including, 56-String Duo, Radiolaria and the Gong Temple. We’ve hosted a women’s weekend, weekly meditations and other sacred gatherings and I plan on running some programs for summer 2018; Goddesses in the Garden, a 7-week women’s circle to encourage our use of our intuition and our connection with the plants and caring for the world around us as well as the Sing Your Sacred Soul Song class which is a circle that uses writing prompts, vocal chakra activation exercises and the spirit of Tulsi to rewrite the stories that have been holding us back from being our best selves.
I hope that you get a chance to visit the garden this summer. I will announce the women’s classes and events here on the blog and we will also host a few events for all genders to come together in the spirit of peace.
Barefoot walking through the wet grass. Cold steps plodding through the thick carpet of grass that has not been mowed in over a week. . . longer and softer than usual. My feet warm up when I stop and stand still for a moment. It’s early and I can see the sun rise over the hill across the field. Wouldn’t it be nice everyday to wake up and walk around the tulsi garden and for a few moments not worry about time. . . September and another round of lavender is asking to be harvested for aromatic bouquets. We had a little cold snap at the beginning of September, but now we’re back to high 80’s this weekend. I harvested the sticky flowers of the calendula to make medicine and of course the tulsi is constantly asking me to pick her and make tea. . . so I do.
At this time of transition going toward the winter, we celebrate the end of summer with picking apples, going to the Garlic & Arts Festival or in our own ways by harvesting what we’ve grown. I picked the basil and made the pesto and put it in the freezer and now every day I harvest tulsi for the tea.
Ive had so many sweet moments in the garden this summer one-on-one with a sister here and there sipping tea and working with the tulsi and have also been blessed to have a few sweet women gathering together. This garden is a place of peace and a place of healing. I find my own peace just from walking, singing or working with the plants. Next season I will be offering a program for women who want to connect with the plants and develop their intuition. We will gather and ground and share, meditate, work with the plants and talk about ideas and concepts to create heaven on earth.
Years ago someone whispered in my ear in a busy bar in downtown DC to read the Celestine Prophecy. I finally did at some point and although the writing leaves a lot to be desired, the content of the ideas is fascinating. For those who are unfamiliar, one of the chapters talks about our relationship with plants and actually seeing the aura or energy around the plant and sending positive energy to the plant and eventually sending positive energy to the people around us. How many times are we sending out vibes that are less than positive? I know that I can definitely say that I have my moments when driving that I might get a little pissy with the people around me and complain about their driving. . . but I also remember those moments when I’ve felt good enough in myself already that those little things just don’t matter and I don’t take any of it personally. But what about going a step farther and sending something positive to people before we’ve even judged if they are good or bad, helpful or not helpful. . . what would our world be like if we collectively embraced this. It would be like a cultural revolution. . . one I could really get behind.
One of the things that the garden has taught me is to slow down and when I enter her circle, to step in mindfully and notice how I place my foot in each step. Sometimes I walk slowly and deliberately taking in deep breaths as I raise my hands up through prayer position, up to the sky and out to the sides in the shape of the toroidal field. Exhaling my hands down, I keep walking and breathing, slowing down and coming back into myself. You see I have to do this to balance out all the rushing around that I do, the going from here to there sometimes without any awareness at all. How do I bring more consciousness into my days. How do I rush less and give myself the time to be present with myself and others. The garden is often teaching me this and I know the protocols and the types of breathing to do, but sometimes I just don’t do them. I know often we know what to do, but just decide to do something else. So on this New Moon in Virgo which is a time for taking the practical steps of getting down to business one step at a time, we start the thing that helps point us in the direction we want to go and we take the first step.
This year for the first time I started seeds in a greenhouse! They are all doing very well. Tulsi and Lavender are coming along as well as some colorful calendula, lupines, nasturtiums, morning glories and more. I was hoping for some fiery Galliardia plants for the beginning of the rainbow pathway, but it’s difficult to get started. . . so we’ll see.
I hope that you got to see some of the very first flowers a few weeks ago. The white drooping Snow Drops, Glory of the Snow and yellow, purple and white crocuses or also purple croci. I was able to make some flower essences of these special flowers at the full moon. They really embody the energy of beginnings and pushing through. . . pushing through those hard cold places. I’m seeing parallels in my personal life right now where there have been some stuck places that I just have not really wanted to look at all that squarely before now. Always lingering below the surface. . . there, but too scary for me to actually shine the light on. But now, finally it’s time to embrace the hard things, the cold things I’ve been keeping hidden in the back of the freezer for so long. We are thawing out and ready to bloom now.
Snow drops have an energetic signature of threes. Three petals make up the tube and then 3 more are drooping down. I’ve also been working the dynamics of threes lately. For me the old pattern of the three was one of being left out or feeling the energy of two against one, but these days that we’re living in now are days of radical evolutionary change where people are coming together and healing old patterns and I can say for myself that I am learning about the beauty of relating in groups of three. Functional threes that are supportive of one another. I’m currently in two writing groups that have 3 people each. It gives us the intimacy of a very small group and very personal attention, but maybe a hair less intense than say two people. They say that the most stable tables have three legs and we have long been indoctrinated into the concept of father, son and Holy Ghost. . . a triangle with the apex at the top is like ascending into heaven and with the apex downward is like bringing the holiness to the earth. . . when these two triangle combine together we get a merkaba. . . which is seen as a symbol for creating heaven here on earth. There are many flowers that combine the patterns of differentiated threes, like when we look at the crocus or an iris we see the contrast of the shape of the inner 3 petals overlaid on the outer 3. …. but the snowdrop is the trailblazing first of the symbolic 2 in the flower world that comes up in the Spring and as such it has a gentle energy of being coupled with the energy of that first emergence and penetrating the soil. . . as the pioneer, the snow drop uses a gentle force. . .its not like the daffodils which says, “hey everybody, I’m here”. . . snow drop is unassuming. . . you really have to get down to earth and underneath to see the center of this flower and in a way that’s what its doing, it’s pulling us down to earth to bring that awareness to our ground cover once again that has been covered by snow for so long. Here I am, let’s ease into spring together. . . be gentle, be penetrative but in a soft gentle way.
The Glory of the Snow is a blue flower that has 5 blue petals with white centers. Its almost a little like that Maxfield Parrish blue. A little more audacious than the snowdrop, it provides a beautiful contrast to the white snow. Little stars on the ground reminding us of the stars in the sky bridging heaven and earth. Five is the star, at least the traditional star in our culture. The five pointed star shines on our flag and when we look at that daVinci sketch of the man in the circle For me 5 is reminiscent of family. I have 3 sisters and one brother. I’m still learning how to work with the combo of 5. Five also reminds me the 5 Chinese Elementals. Five can seem a little overwhelming to me at times. I dream of fields of saturated colors and there are some places where I’ve seen a good showing, but always on the lookout for the beauty and welcome you to share your sightings of flowers. Hopefully we can continue to create more and more beauty around us and inspire others to see the beauty that we see. This world certainly could use more beauty in it.
Most of us are pretty familiar with croci. We mostly see these as the first flowers in Spring. Usually 3 or six petaled, they usually have 3 stamen. Stamen are the pollen producing parts of the flowers that rest at the center of the flower. I think it was the end of March when I was walking through Smith College here in Northampton and spotted a huge patch of purple crocuses under a big oak tree. They are a gentle flower often emerging along with snow bringing us joy and happiness as we are reminded after a long winters rest that Spring flowers are nearing.
I will make the essences and Rose Petal Elixir available for sale as well as selling some plants at a local farmer’s market. Please stay posted for what we’re cooking up here in the garden this summer.
“And we’ve got to get ourselves back to the garden.” ~ Joni Mitchell
One of those iconic songs from the sixties rings true today. Really the garden is timeless, all the way back to Adam & Eve. Even the wise book of the Christians and Jews refers to the importance of the garden. It’s such an essential backbone of our existence, put on our planet to nurture us. Some people grow vegetables, others herbs and flowers. I’m focusing mostly on Tulsi, Rose and Lavender. What is Eden? How do we get back there? I see it as heaven on earth and one of my main missions here on this planet is to live each moment with conscious loving kindness to create that heaven on earth once again. That is what this blog is about: The places that our consciousness connects with the spiritual and how to bridge our inner world with this world we live in that we may shine our lights so brightly that we inspire others to shine and sing their own soul’s song.
I started this blog to chronicle the events and magic of the plants and the culture of people that grow around it. I’ll talk some about the actual growing process, but will also muse on our connection to spirit, our own and the thread of loving kindness that connects us all. That almost unnameable force that connects us all is how I got to be here on this piece of land with this garden. Mind you, I’m not a landowner, yet somehow spirit has conspired to help me bring forth this vision into the real 3D world. Thank you great Spirit for bringing me here. Everyday I count my blessings and am so grateful.
You might ask how a person with no savings and nothing to her name could manifest this dream. My only assets are a car and a dog, well not sure if Taka is technically an asset, but to me she is my biggest one. This is the story of what happens when you really, really, really believe in your dreams. I imagined this garden, I drew this garden regularly for over a year. I talked about it to everyone I knew. I was excited about it. I enlisted the thoughts and imaginations of others by sharing the vision. I really think others could almost see it too. I prayed a lot. I asked source, the oneness, Great Spirit to show me where and I trusted my gut.
Around 2011 we had this snowstorm around Halloween that caused a lot of damage. The leaves were still on the trees and a lot of power lines went down. I was living alone in an apartment in Northampton, Mass. when my power went out I had no heat. I could cook on the gas stove top, but it was cold in there. That’s when I made the decision that I wanted to live somewhere that had a wood stove and some better resources to handle those kinds of things.
I thought maybe Montague or Shutesbury, but then I started having a magical connection with Shelburne Falls. I could just feel inside that it was the right place. So I rented a small office in Shelburne Falls to bring myself and my energy up there while I looked around. I was studying with a rabbi at the time because I wanted to learn about Judaism and he had invited me to sing at a Passover dinner at the synagogue. I went over to TempleIsrael in Greenfield to volunteer to help set the space up and at some point between putting out plates and silverware I got myself locked out of the building. I knocked and pounded and tried to get their attention, but to no avail. Luckily it was a full moon and as I was standing there I could see the beauty of her fullness and I started singing. The acoustics in this little vestibule were so strong that my voice really resonated beautifully. I think that the vibration of the singing helped to raise the consciousness of what happened next.
Someone finally heard me and opened up the door. I was working with this lovely woman Janice, whom I had just met. As we were setting up another table she told me that she was from Shelburne Falls.
“I’m interested in moving there,” I said.
“Well, what are you looking for?”
Inside I thought, really? Can I really ask for what I want? Well here goes nothing!
“I’d really like to find a house sit.”
“Oh, well we’re looking for a house sitter in August, “she said.
And that’s how I got here to this beautiful piece of land nestled in between the hills and near the river. There are goats and chickens and when I first moved here there were several greenhouses that were still standing from a farmer who had been running a CSA. Just like home!
Then there was asking about the garden. I had told Janice and her husband, Michael about my idea for the garden after a couple of months of living here. But asking about planting it here was a whole other trust exercise. Inside, again, I thought… ” I can’t ask that, they’ll just say no.”
But somehow I convinced myself that I had nothing to lose in asking the question. The worst thing that could happen is that they could say, “no thanks.” But they didn’t, they said yes!
And with that yes, I put a shovel in the ground and just kept on digging, trusting that the vision would be revealed.