Garden Lessons: Finding Value in Small Places

If you asked me what I feared the most, my answer would have easily been “BEES!

I did not want to hear them buzz and I could not stand to see them outside. My fear was so strong that I’d take off running if a bee came within 20 feet of me! So many times I would ask myself “Why do bees even exist?” That same sentiment persisted until one week ago.

Last week, I went outside to water my plants. I recently moved my squash pot outside because it wasn’t producing any fruit. The plant would make these big beautiful yellow flowers, but it would not form an actual squash no matter what I tried. I assumed the plant might’ve needed more direct sunlight, so I moved the pot to the porch.

Within a few days, I had squash!

I couldn’t understand what made the difference … until I walked out that morning to water my plants and noticed a huge bee frolicking around my squash blossoms. My instinct was to run (because of fear), but I paused for a moment.

I stopped long enough to see the bee pollinating my plant. I realized that my squash wasn't growing inside because there was nothing to help it cross-pollinate. Moving the pot outdoors allowed the bee to do exactly what it was designed to do.

It was clear. Bees were the only reason my baby squash started to grow, and I spent all those years questioning the existence of bees because I didn’t understand their purpose. Since bees had added no immediate value to my life, it was easy to fear them.  And that fear continued until the very thing I feared was the one thing my plants had been missing.

Beyond my fear of bees, there was a bigger life lesson I could not ignore.

Life lesson: We tend to fear the things we don’t understand, and it is time to gain some understanding. Even if you cannot see the purpose of something (or someone), it can still deserve to be appreciated and valued in some way.