Gardening solitude suits me. I’m sitting on the ground, spellbound by something I don’t remember planting. It’s a little flash of green making tracks along the crack in one of my stone urns, where the guy who moved it also broke it. Or I catch crocus leaves plowing through the last snow of the season and I’m gaping at sights as if they were the outtakes in a porno movie. I don’t mean to get personal, but do you know anything more pleasurable than watching eternal optimism front row, center?
My contained garden dares to grow in a chaotic city, probably because I have the pluck to cultivate a rooftop beneath the heavens, over the fumes of traffic, and in between schedules and scaffolds of construction crews. I’m working twenty-one stories above asphalt and cement while reaching for the moon and the stars; Eden is not without effort.
Neatly sheared evergreen walls—no higher than the building’s parapet—emphasize my garden’s constraints. As well as its strengths. I’ve got forty-four running feet of tightly sheared Taxus x media ‘Brownii’ hedge for backbone because I prefer slow-growing hardwood in plants as well as people. Or maybe I just want a green ledge for drying laundry in the summertime because I also love it when the sheets smell of sunshine.
— from the Prologue of A Growing Gardener by Abbie Zabar