Yesterday I was clipping spent sunflower heads and lining them face up around the edge of my circle garden. Some of the larger heads contain at least 100 glossy, black sunflower seeds. I leave the drying heads in the garden over the winter for the chickadees, who flit in and out, plucking the seeds from their husks. Some seeds will drop into the soil and magically appear as "volunteers" next spring in the form of seedlings, saving me the expense of buying new seeds.
I am always amazed at the miracle that one small seed morphs into a six-foot tall plant, and then produces a number of seed heads that can in turn produce hundreds more plants. Yesterday I thought about this tremendous gift, and took it as some sort of sign. God or whoever provides so much. The potential for plenty is there, just waiting. But we must pay attention to the opportunity, reap the harvest and sow it intelligently. And then I thought about our country and how it offers the same vast potential of growth and plenty--but only if we apply the same principles: pay attention to the opportunity, reap the harvest, save some for seed production, and then sow the seeds with care.
Carolyn Faught is a grower and owner of Omena Cut Flowers U Pick. www.omenacutflowers.com.