Gardening Metaphor!

July 30, 2014

This year has been a good one for my garden. The key variable here is rainfall. It’s funny that virtually every metaphor about rain is a negative one, seeing as how beneficial it is, and indeed how absolutely vital is so often is.

But I want to talk about more than rain. I’ve read a lot of garden books, and learned many things. But the most crucial thing I ever learned from them came in two sentences. I can’t remember where I read them, and I will need to paraphrase. The second of the two sentences is the key one. They are:

-Every plant has three environmental needs and these vary in proportion from one type of plant to another: Sunlight, nutrients and water. -But you can’t make up for a lack of one of them by providing more of one of the others.

This tells you 90% of what you need to know about gardening. But that part about not being able to substitute one good thing for another seems to me to be a powerful metaphor for much else. I’ll let you think about that, while I lie in the sun.

Tom Toles is the editorial cartoonist for The Post and writes the Tom Toles blog.
Continue reading
Comments
Show Comments
Most Read

opinions

opinions

Success! Check your inbox for details.

See all newsletters