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A Garden is a Promise


The poet, artist and gardener Ian Hamilton Findlay wrote “A garden is not an object but a process”. A garden is a process, a daily ritual moving through shifting seasons. It is, as Findlay expressed, something beyond secular ecology or aesthetic. My garden is a communion between myself and the land I have chosen to work with, an act of faith, a promise.

The first summer I moved to Detroit I found a summer garden abandoned by a high school. Big blooms were going to seed. I collected handfuls of the dried heads and stored them in a cupboard. The seeds were planted in the warmth of spring, in my first garden. Each bed I built, each seed I cast, was part of an ongoing conversation between me, soil, nematodes, goldfinches, powdery mildew. These seeds are as much a part of the garden as the fruit and flowers I harvested.

I have created this library of saved seeds to share. Each packet contains a mix of marigolds and zinnias, the first generation of flowers from my original saved seeds. The zinnias will continue to open-pollinate and blend colors. The marigolds will come on slowly and grow to waist high.

If you’d like to receive seeds, send a self addressed & stamped envelope to:

Taxonomy Press
327 Newport Street
Detroit, MI 48215