My seasonal mistake

It is August and finally hot, for a couple of days in a row. At this time in the summer season I must correct myself on the black and white reasoning in my garden. There is now an abundance of colors and fragrances and many insects are attracted by it. My architectural garden teems with life as if all the small creatures in the world mock my formal principles. The sun is fierce in light and all the subtleties in shades of green disappear, only lipstick colors endure. “So that is what happens when plants claim their right to attract lovers”. I admit to myself my seasonal mistake. A garden is only partly for humans. At night, when from home, when too hot to be outside, when growth comes in colors and when ripening happens, a garden seems to have a will of its own. Then ‘my plan’ turns into a biotope that acts without a general composition. All the individual plants respond to their circumstances by the inevitable progressive stages of sap circulation and photosynthetic digestion. In that seasonal period, if I would still dictate my will for black and white clearness, the cooperation between me and the plants would disrupt in fatal casualties.

From the perspective of the insects, the perspective on gardening changes even more drastically. I will leave that for another time.

One thought on “My seasonal mistake

  1. It seems, my dear Paul, you’re a real architect. But architect’s have to abide the laws of nature too, even when their plan is “black and whtie”. If it’d be “big and small” or even “natural and human” nature would be in charge. At last.

    Keep gardening. And writing.

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About paulroncken

Paul Roncken is Assistent Professor Landscape Architecture at Wageningen University and Independent Advisor on Spatial Quality for the province of Utrecht (the Netherlands). His research focuses on integral design of productive landscapes with special attention to the experience of meaning and landscape aesthetics.