Friday, August 17, 2012

I Wonder

The seven ancient wonders of the world was a list of seven amazing accomplishments of man.  The Great Pyramid of Giza is the only wonder on that list left standing.  I would love to see this wonder of the ancient world.

But since I've become a gardener, I've realized I don't need to see The Great Pyramid to experience great wonders.  I experience them daily in the garden.  Every day I pause in awe and amazement.  Here are my personal seven wonders of the world:

1.  A seed.
I often wonder how such a small thing can hold the secret of life.  It is truly a mystery to me that seeds are the difference between starvation and satiety.

2.  Soil.
It's amazing to think of the city of life living in each small piece of soil.  Sometimes I just stop my digging to stare and wonder at this ecosystem of microorganisms.


3.  Rain.
Any gardener will tell you that rain will affect a plant's growth much more than a sprinkler system.  From its formation, to its feel, this is a wonder that is soon missed if it is absent for any amount of time.

4.  Seasons.
Spring, summer, autumn, and winter.  Each have their own mystery, and I am often amazed how sensitive plants are in response to the changing of the seasons.


5.  Flying creatures.  Dragonflies, bees, butterflies, birds - to name a few.
Of course, just the fact that they can fly is amazing.  But what makes me stop in wonder is the importance of each of these creatures in our gardens, and the impact of them on our own existence.

6.  Babies of all kinds - human or animal.
They are each a miracle.


7.  The interconnection between it all.
The way the pollinators help to make a seed.  The way the soil and rain allow the seed to become a carrot.  The way the seasons affect the carrot.  The way the carrot delivers calories, nutrients, and vitamins to our bodies.

The longer I live, the more I realize that everything is connected in some way, even if we don't quite understand how.

So, it's disturbing when I read that the butterflies are being affected by the Fukushima nuclear disaster, with mutations being passed down from generation to generation.  You can read more about it here.

I wonder if this will affect the butterflies in my garden eventually.  I wonder if this will affect other animals.  I wonder if this will one day have an effect on each of us.

I wonder.




38 comments:

  1. Love your list of wonders. I marvel at things in my garden, too. Makes me more positive of God my creator! Thanks for sharing=have a good weekend! Carol

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    1. The more I learn, the more I am amazed. There is no way to know all the delicate intricacies that are going on around us, without us even being aware.

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  2. Very thought-provoking, Holley. The butterfly mutations bother me, too. As do the amphibian mutations from other causes. Thanks for reminding us to appreciate the little things.

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    1. Many years ago I saw a documentary on frog mutations. It was quite shocking.

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    2. It will have an effect. Some of us will live to see the effect. Meantime, we garden on.

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  3. Very thought-provoking, Holley. The butterfly mutations bother me, too. As do the amphibian mutations from other causes. Thanks for reminding us to appreciate the little things.

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  4. Your list of wonders is brilliant; a seed, a dragonfly, yes these are wonders. God created so much variety and beauty, and I thank him daily.

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    1. There is so much to marvel out in just one square foot of garden! You don't have to look very far to be amazed and humbled.

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  5. I would have added herbaceous perennials to my personal list; it seems such a feat of magic when plants die completely in autumn, only to resurface from the bare soil again next spring.

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    1. You are right - it is a joy to see those perennials wake up each spring!

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  6. Nice post Hollygarden. Now you have me wondering.

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    1. The more I know, the more I realize there is so much more I don't know!

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  7. Yes I would bet there would be some problems with other animals, birds and insects.

    Cher Sunray Gardens

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    1. I think so, too, Cher. It is worrisome. We are all dependent upon other species, whether we realize it or not.

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  8. Holly, nice story of wonders. The ancients said: "If you can wonder so you live", it's true.

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    1. I like that saying, Nadezda. I think they were right.

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  9. What a great thought-provoking post! As a surgeon, which is the next better thing to just being an anatomist, the way that living things are put together and work constantly amaze me.

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    1. I don't know much about how our bodies work, but what I do know seems quite incredible. I can imagine that your line of work is fascinating.

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  10. Very nice post! I think one of the best things about gardening is that it helps us keep in touch with the sense of wonder. I also like your theme, and it reminds me of how fascinated I was when I read about the Hanging Gardens of Babylon in the encyclopedia a zillion years ago when I was doing some grade school project. There was no illustration, so my fantasy about what it might have been like was pretty wild.

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    1. Wouldn't that be wonderful to be able to see the Hanging Gardens of Babylon? I bet it was more incredible than I can imagine.

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  11. Yes - good question. We are all connected and the mutation of moths and butterflies is concerning. Will it one impact on us all? Thank you for the post. It is making me look also at being grateful.

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    1. I do wonder if it will have an impact on more than we will at first realize. Especially since the mutations seem to be getting worse, not better. I feel sorry for these poor little butterflies, that had no control over what has happened to them.

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  12. Great post!
    And I'll tell you soil is a LOT more complicated than most people think. I took soil agronomy at Texas A&M for a summer and was amazed at how many chemical interactions there are in soil. I'm amazed at how it is built and how it breaks down, and how many types there are. Add to that the organic element and it becomes a wonderland of bacteria and other life forms. It is indeed a miracle.
    I did not know about the butterflies and the nuclear connection. I don't have a good answer for the energy problems of our Earth, but hydrogen power and newer, cleaner ways to process coal and natural gas seem to make easier problems to solve when something goes awry. It is hard to take back nuclear energy problems when that genie turns bad. Nuclear poisoning is so invisible that it's hard to get upset about it until it's too late. On the other hand, dirt coal and smoke is EASY to see and get upset about and gets people riled up enough to take action. I still remember the horrors of Chernobyl and the Three Mile Island scare and the fresh disaster in Japan make three strikes your out in my mind. On a positive note...it rained!!!! Finally. We got a torrent this afternoon and ended up with 1.45". How about you?

    David/:0)

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    1. I have often thought about writing a post about soil, but there is so much to cover, I didn't think I could do it justice. You are right - when you learn about it, you realize that it really is a miracle.
      I understand our need for more energy, and nuclear power satisfies that need more than most ways, but it is devastating when something goes wrong. And we all know that things go wrong! I wish there was more coverage on the Japan disaster. It seems the media has chosen to move on, and I am left wondering. As for the rain, yes! We got rain for two days, with a total of 1.32 inches over those two days. I am very happy!

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  13. Very beautiful post Holley. The garden is truly awe inspiring. This year since I started some tomatoes from seed, I've been amazed at what comes from a little seed.

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    1. It really is amazing that an entire plant can come from such a tiny little thing. And make its own seed again!

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  14. Holley, a nice post that sums up quite a bit. I think number 7 was my favorite because it takes into account the whole process of life.

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    1. The more I learn, the more I realize we are all dependent upon every thing in the earth - soil, plants, other animals. We each affect each other!

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  15. Lovely post :-)

    It is startling to hear about the mutations occuring due to the contamination at Fukushima. I recently saw a documentary that was made a few years ago about how amphibious life in certain areas of California are experiencing a gender-shift due to chemical fertilizers seeping into their habitats. It was awful when it was revealed that the levels of the contamination were lower than the allowable levels of that same contaminant in our drinking water. There are so many instances like this where something in the environment is telling us something is wrong long before it starts having a visible effect on us (kind of like a Canary in a mine), but most of us are either unaware or unconcerned or simply can't do anything about it because the damage is already done. It's very sad.

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    1. You are right - it's very sad. Why don't we listen? :(

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  16. Thanks for a lovely post, Holley. Nature and the interconnectedness of the world around us are truly awe-inspiring.

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    1. I only wish the chemical companies, and the "powers that be" would learn a bit more about it!

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  17. Holley your post is beautiful as it reminds us how precious it all is...ALL That last photo is amazing...I had not heard this recently but I am not surprised...very sad as we humans do take it all for granted and spoil the nature around us for the critters and for us...how will be affected by all this is why #7 is so important and why I try to practice-first do no harm as I garden and live. thx for this reminder to us all!

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    1. We do seem to take it all for granted. But it is a very delicate balance. I hope we never upset that balance permanently.

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  18. Holley, this is an incredible post with a very powerful message. I love it and believe the majesty of nature is one of God's greatest gifts to us

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    1. I love that last sentence. Very well said.

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  19. Beautiful wonders. I too heard about the mutations in the butterflies. It's so sad.

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    1. It is so very sad. I can't imagine all the things this disaster will affect. And to think that it may alter a species permanently is horrifying.

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