Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Healing Earth

Pictured left it Monty Don. What i would like for xmas is his new book called growing out of trouble. In the course of his amateur gardening, then writing he found that growing things made him feel better.
He writes on his site the Monty Project:

"Many years ago I had a dream in which I sunk my fingers into the warm soil where they took root and grew deep into the rich earth.I awoke with a profound sense of strength and happiness and the sense of being rooted in the earth has remained with me ever since.... I have an absolute belief that the earth heals"

He says the world has become removed from the process of tending soil and growing food. The idea was formed to make a project where people in trouble with the law, and addictions should form a group to grow homegrown produce, to rear livestock on a six acre site. They then could sit around a table, and eat the food. It is a process of engaging people who have become disengaged from the communities they live in. To try to inspire them to a cleaner, less dangerous way of living. To become acquainted with the changing of the seasons. The meal is communal building, the healing is from the growing.
He made a TV series not yet shown, and the book which is what I want for Xmas!!

It reminds me of the healing gardens of New York which I read about, but still have not seen. (Is it available on the Internet yet?It was a PBS film, but the problems of regionall DVD's and TV's meant I could have ordered a copy but not watched it when it got here).
Here is the Guardians review of the book:,,1939612,00.html
When I was searching for the Monty Don book I found a charity that uses gardening for people with disabilities. By enabling them, so they develop Abilities. Alas it is a London/Reading based charity but I will look for similar groups up here to try and spread the healing of gardening and growing..
I found it mad that two projects on different sides of the Atlantic are so similar. What I found in my garden, and what makes me blog as an expression of that.I do believe that gardens can heal, any effort in tending the earth.
Does anyone know of any similar projects where they live? Your links will be appreciated, and checked out.


Anonymous said...

This is a very interesting post, Snappy. I agree. The earth is healing.
Your dream was inspiring.
I look forward to seeing your butterfly garden next year.

Anita said...

Snappy, thanks a lot for writing about Monty Don. Guess what, he will be mentioned in my next post as well (the one about strawberries). Thank you as well for all those links, I'll check them out later on.
Hope you will get his new book for X-Mas.

Silvia Hoefnagels . Salix Tree said...

Great post! I like Monty too, I try to watch him in Gardener's World when I remember that it's on!
He's got a great vision, doesn't he? I love it when people use thier fame to better the world. I have noticed that gardeners are some of the most pleasent people you can meet, so it must be true about it being healing to the mind.

Naturegirl said...

I would agree that one of my simple pleasures in this life is getting my hands into the earth..this is my natural holistic approach to health and happiness.
I agree with you that~*earth heals*~I must look into that book..thank you for posting!

lisa said...

Great post, Snappy! I think projects like this can do a lot of good...hope more spring up all over the world...

Unknown said...

Wow... I like Monty Don, too--there's a book of his that I leaf through occasionally at my local bookstore, although I haven't bought it yet--but I didn't know about this project at all. Now I want to read "Growing Out of Trouble" too!

Kristen S. Boyesen said...

Great post with lots of helpful information. The earth is very healing. I have experienced it, heard others talk of it, and have read of the truth of this fact in several books.

I was at a meeting last night, and one topic was about gardening in cities. Some cities are full of private gardens, others have fery few. When questioned, the people in the low gardening areas said they had no idea how to go about it!

Cities with low gardening participation would do well to form outreach and education programs. A sense of pride of place and community unity develop when there are gardens, in my opinion.

Sigruns German Garden said...

Oh, I hope you get this book for christmas!
And I hope, that I get my big hosta book also.


Philosophical Karen said...

I am reading Kristen's comment above and it reminds me of when my husband and I got lost and ended up driving through a neighbourhood that I later learned was near the (infamous) Love Canal in New York state.

What struck me about the houses was that not one of them had any flowers or bushes planted around them. There were no gardens to speak of, and it was very dreary. (The grass was well tended, but still -- no flowers anywhere!)

Previous to seeing that it had never occurred to me that people in houses wouldn't have (or want?) some kind of plantings around them.

David (Snappy) said...

Becky the Quote was from Monty Dons website.I will do some research on the butterfly garden.I will post as soon as the butterflies come...
Anita, we both have stawberries in November,hope to get that book..
Salix tree it is good when someone famous uses their fame to change the world.He has personel reasons for making that project.It is inspiring stuff, and i hope it rolls on to make a better world..
Naturegirl, you have put your finger on it.If you put your hands in the earth stresses fade away..
Lisa, Im hoping to find more projects to write about.The world is changing, for more good i hope..
Blackswamp girl I do not have any Monty Don books.I have seen him on gardeners world (with his traditional shepherds shirt and tanned bear like hands covered in soil really), and read him in magasines.Even gardeners need role models and he is good.An amateur gardener and professional writer..
Kristen, I agree with the education and out reach.The communal effect of gardening has more effects than people know.That healing gardens of New York looked at deprived area's.Monty Don has chosen to work with people who have never gardened,If the healing can work they make take it and inspire other people.Thats the hope and dream..
Sigrun what hosta book do you want for xmas?
Karen,Love Canal needs a snappy makeover.A communal garden, maybe some hanging baskets,pots..I cant imagine a place with no planted flowers!Getting lost showed you something new, and sad really :(

Kerri said...

This is an interesting subject Snappy. I absolutely agree, gardening is healing and inspiring for the soul. My BIL makes regular visits and does work with a similar organization in Virginia. They take young men who would otherwise go to jail for a while (the men are given a choice..jail or this ranch) and teach them how to grow things and look after livestock. It's a wonderful idea. They learn new skills and gain a sense of accomplishment.