Mindful Engagement through the Seasons: Seeds

Learning through the Lens of Seeds

“Though I do not believe that a plant will spring up where no seed has been, I have great faith in a seed… Convince me that you have a seed there, and I am prepared to expect wonders.” – Henry David Thoreau

In late October, as the deciduous trees release the last of their leaves, New England farm fields, meadows, and highway median strips appear as lifeless patches of summer gone by. For many, morning routines during the school year are hurried moments, choking down toast, cornflakes, or coffee on the way out the door in heroic attempts to get the kids on the bus or dropped off at school while making it to work on time. Once on the road, maybe stuck behind an old farm truck overloaded with bundles of hay or barreling down I-91 towards the upper or lower Pioneer Valley, shades of toast brown and cornflake yellow from breakfast are mimicked in the landscape as it whizzes by.

But are these sections of our landscape really just lifeless patches of brittle brown and bleached-yellow best served covered with a blanket of white snow? We watch these spaces awaken in the spring with emerging verdant shoots and leaves, become a buzz with pollinators in the summer, and release their final piquancy of color in early autumn with a scheme of foliage in which New England is so famous. This time of the year, the liminal space between foliage and snow, is no different with the amazing gifts nature has to offer. It’s just packaged differently and might require a renewed perspective.

Here is where slowing down and taking the time to observe the late autumn landscape might stir a sense of awe by understanding the staggering potential and rich history held in these liminal spaces in the form of seeds and their remaining pods.

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