Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Is Gardening a Form of Scarcity Thinking?

As a bit of background, I like to think of myself as an abundant thinker. I dream big. I have big goals. I'm optimistic. I look at challenges or obstacles as opportunities for creative thinking. When I don't reach my goals, I look back over my plan to figure out where I need to be better. I usually see the big picture and then figure out how to turn that into reality. I also believe in the law of attraction - what I focus my energies on and what I think about, I bring about.

I also really enjoy gardening. Now this is fairly new for me. Two years ago, the summer Little Merry Sunshine was born, I decided to dig in the dirt for the first time. That summer I planted a bunch of flowers and 3 tomato plants. Last summer, I increased my vegetable plants to include 3 different varieties of tomatoes, garlic chives, banana peppers, and basil. Both summers, I was blessed with an abundance of vegetables and I shared my good fortune with friends.

This summer, I have 3 different types of tomatoes, garlic chives, basil, 2 different types of peppers, strawberries, peas, carrots, catnip, green beans, corn, and spinach planned all from seeds. They've all been started indoors, but I have yet to get them into the ground. I had wanted to get them in the ground over Mother's Day weekend, but the weather was miserable and I was sick. This past weekend, I worked all weekend.

Now you're caught up. . .

This morning, I had a conversation with a friend of mine and it moved into that I was a little frustrated that I didn't have my garden in the ground yet. This wouldn't be a problem, except that I want to achieve the maximum yield from my vegetables and the longer it takes me to get them in the ground, the longer it will be until I can harvest them and the smaller the harvest. I really love having fresh vegetables for a large portion of the summer and then making sauces with them in the fall. I also want to learn how to can this year. Additionally, the more I have, the more I can share with friends and give to the local food pantry during their Giving Garden summer program. Of course, growing my own vegetables saves me a good chunk of money, which is certainly a huge benefit.

At this point, my friend says to me, "Why do you grow your own vegetables? That's scarcity thinking! While you're focused on working in your garden to save money, you're not thinking abundantly. Focusing on pinching pennies is scarcity thinking."

I explained to my friend that I find working in my garden peaceful and relaxing. I love knowing how the food I eat has been fertilized and with what chemicals (or not). Tomatoes that have been flown in from South America two months ago just don't taste the same as the ones I pick from my garden two minutes before I eat them like apples. Gardening is great exercise. Nothing is a better example of faith and belief than seeing fruits, vegetables, and flowers develop from little seeds. I'm helping the environment and reducing my carbon footprint because my food doesn't need to be flown or trucked in from who-knows-where. I share my good fortune with others, which spreads abundance. And, yes, I save money. It is estimated that a $70 investment in a garden can save $600 annually. I don't save that much money because I don't spend $70 on my garden and my garden isn't very big. I do know that saving money on groceries allows me to do other things.

My friend still wasn't convinced that gardening was really about thinking abundantly and still tried to tell me that by spending my time growing my vegetables I was preventing abundance from coming into my life.

In the end, we agreed to disagree. But the conversation has stayed with me all day. What do you think? Do you think that planting and growing my own vegetables is a form of scarcity thinking?


  1. Preventing abundance from coming ito your life? I didn't know you were friends with Oprah.

  2. Ya, we're BFFs. Actually, not really. But I do believe that we create our destiny and that when we focus on good things, good things happen. When we focus on negativity, we create that too. It's just what I believe.

  3. Planting a growing thing strikes me as abundance thinking en masse. You start with a small seed, and look what comes out of it! Plus, how can taking time to nurture yourself body and spirit be anything but a setting of the stage for abundance? Gardening also teaches us that, despite our best intentions, shit happens and sometimes that shit is fertilizing and sometimes it is destructive.

    Just an FYI, the important thing is to get your plants in the ground at the right temperature. You won't neccesarily have a smaller harvest just because you plant at the end of May. If you plant while it is still too cold, however, you will get dead plants and rotted seeds. In general, I always plant end of May or beginning of June, but when we lived in Wisconsin, I remember one year, it was so cold we didn't plant until Summer Solstice and we still got a good harvest.

    By the way, this is GourmetGoddess... having problems submitting today :(

  4. I'm with you GG. I think gardening is abundance thinking.

    Thanks for the tip on planting. I did not know that. I do know about it being too cold, but this past weekend was so beautiful and I'm just so eager to get out in all the dirt! Although I did take in my impatiens that are patiently waiting to be planted the other night because we of the cold. Plants in the ground would have been hard to protect.

    I've never planted from seeds before and so many of the packets say 60 days from date of planting to harvest and all I can think is it'll be August before I know it. I'd like to have some veggies sooner than that. It's always a learning process though! Each year I get a little better.

  5. GARDENING shows that you


  6. Obviously, you friend does not understand all the pleasure of being outdoors, planting your own flowers & vegetables & then watching them grow as you tend to them each day.

    LOTS of LOVE,

  7. It is exciting that there is a movement that seems to be making gardening popular again, particularly among younger homeowners. These Americans craving authenticity are concerned about a bleak economy which is reinvigorating the trend of growing-it-yourself. Blueberries, can be part of this grow-it-yourself mantra as folks turn "back to the future" to simplify their lives while gardening for the good of their wallets and their health. Container gardening and growing edible landscapes is a part of this trend. Blueberries are perennials, so once planted in a small garden or container and established they will provide many years of fruit and beauty to support this growing trend. Some of best small blueberry plants for this purpose is Top hat and Sunshine blue which you can get these and many other varieties at very good prices www.blueberrycroft.com .
    Their site also has more information on growing blueberries in containers.


Thank you for leaving a comment on Little Merry Sunshine. Due to the volume of spam comments, all comments must be approved to ensure they are not spam or spambots. Thank you for understanding.