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By Helena Smrcek

Admittedly, I’m a slightly enthusiastic gardener. I planned my garden in January and pinned the chart of the future rows to the corkboard in my office.

This year I promised myself to hold out until Victoria day, recalling the frozen cucumber plants three springs ago. I diligently replaced them with new ones, purchased at my local nursery, only to find out mid-season that someone mislabeled the trays. Instead of two rows of pickling cukes I had an ocean of thriving acorn squash.

There were also the tomatoes I planted in late April two years ago since the weather was beautiful. I have spent most of May trying to keep them alive under tarps.

So this spring I waited. Kind of, since my husband built me four coldframes. But for most part I resisted. Finally May long weekend arrived. My daughter and I planted, and planted, and planted some more. The men in our household did help, of course, especially my husband, dispensing advice from the seat of his tractor, as he cut the grass.

I visited my plant babies every day. At first they looked a little shocked to be outside, so I watered them, and hoped the roots would take. Some did, others didn’t. A few days later I trusted my daughter to re-seed the empty spaces, with clear instructions to mark each seed with a tag.

Upon inspection I noticed no tags.
“Did you seed the rows? “ I asked.
“Of course. It’s all done.”
“So, where are the labels?” I was worried.
“Oh, I couldn’t find them, but I remember where I put stuff.”

I handed her a long strip of nursery tags the next morning, and we ventured to the garden. As I started to weed one of the coldframes, she turned to me and asked where exactly the tomatoes were. I stared, desperately trying to gauge if she was joking. She wasn’t. Silently I pointed to the five rows of silver cages, struggling to keep calm.

Wishing for superhero vision, I walked the rows that evening, trying to spot the smallest hints of green, only to realize I could do nothing but wait. It felt like waiting on a teenager to acknowledge that a parent could have been right.

Turning on the irrigation system the next morning, I thought of the times in my life I have sown seeds and struggled to keep faith. And then I tuned into the morning birdsong, and realized that no amount of worrying would make the plants grow any faster. The only thing to do was trust. To trust my daughter with the seed packets and white tags. The sun to keep the seedlings warm. The rain, or our well, to keep them irrigated. But most of all to trust God. He is the One who makes the seeds grow, the ones sown into our gardens, just as much as those sown into the lives of others. Only Him I trust with my harvest, for God never fails.