In the spirit of May, this week we’re headed out in the garden, or down the block, or up the trail for some plant-y wonder and magic in the company of Bridget Beth Collins – the creative force, glittering vision and imagination behind the botanical art of Flora Forager.
Bridget is a gardener, a mother, and an artist who often brings all three of her life roles together in her work. She founded the Instagram feed and custom artistry known as Flora Forager in the 2000-teens, and has since been the author of three books – The Art of Flora Forager, the Flora Forager ABC’s, and most recently The Flower Fairy Journals.
Seeking out the beauty in nature, Bridget’s mother encouraged her to go outside and author Roald Dahl's words of wisdom along the lines of "look with glittering eyes"….not dull or critical eyes, because as Bridget attests, we will find magic if we are looking for it.
Can I get an 'Amen'?
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JOIN US again next week, when with summer vacation firmly in sight, we head to the coast to speak with two coastal gardeners whose Marin County radio program In a Coastal Garden explores all things coastal gardening. Listen in!
ALL PHOTOS COURTESY OF FLORA FORAGER, all rights reserved.
Thinking out loud this week:
I just want to highlight that wonderful wonderful advice the Bridget offers us from Roald Dahl: to look at the world with glittering eyes because we will find magic if we are looking for it.
I will sound as “silly and dumb” as ever Bridget ever worried about being, as cliché as a person might sound, but if it were up to me I would have you plant that in your garden hearts: - look at the world with glittering garden eyes people because we will find magic/beauty/joy/kindness/love if we are looking for it, if we were are cultivating them. And after all, that’s exactly what gardening is and believes in isn’t it????
In this conversation with Bridget, I truly love how her story encourages our stories – I think? Encourages us to consider the metaphors and listen for the many many lessons the garden and natures magic/majesty brings to us each day – the first one being when one part of who we are says that whatever it is we’re thinking of, dreaming of, playing with is “silly or going to be dumb” that we consider reminding that side of ourselves - who is as we know trying to only really trying protect us from harm or humiliation - that we’re ok with the risk and that our most fearful side is going to be ok with the risk too. Whatever we’re itching to try might be silly and it might be seen as dumb by someone, but it might be magic and just what we and our community need to spark joy and imagination today. Flora Forager says so.
The garden allows us so many metaphors and messages – like Bridget’s garden and her new rose reminding her that in order to make room for new things she would like to cultivate, she must let go of things that have outgrown their time or space.
I think the best messages through metaphor that the garden brings to me include that diversity is the foundation for all really vibrant and cyclical life, that we all live in community and rely on one another despite all that we might accomplish through our own labor and interests, and finally – that there will be a season for that too – no matter what “that” is. What about you – are there particular metaphors from the garden you hold tight to? I would love to hear them if you do - send me an email: email@example.com. I would love to hear your garden metaphor lessons. We all have them, I think!
And – just because you are here listening with me even now at the very end of the second podcast break, I have five copies of Flora Forager’s The Fairy Journals that I would like to share. Whoever sends me an email with their best garden messages/metaphors by June 1st will be added to a drawing for a copy of the The Fairy Journals. I will pick five names on June 1st.
To be added to the drawing, send me an email with your most valued garden metaphor/messages: send your email to firstname.lastname@example.org by June 1st.
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