Breath of Fresh Air

This time of year the skies are often cloudy, daylight hours are fleeting, and a window usually separates our view of the garden.  Summoning the willpower to slog through gardening tasks can be tough.  On the few bright sunny days, we’d rather be doing something refreshing and cheery.

A park can be a great place to enjoy these days.  Whether it’s a famous national park or a small regional one, hiking along a ridgeline can be energizing and inspiring.  Views of wide open spaces seem to clear minds.  They also afford many ideas for gardening and design.  A seemingly uniform green hillside can have grasses of different heights, variations of blues and browns mixed in, small valleys with steeper drops, and rock outcroppings.  At walking speed, it’s easier to spot these nuances than cruising through a park with a camera out the window.

Biking is also a great way to tour parks.  On a ride through Mt. Tam last weekend, I saw small waterfalls, fern grottos, huge redwoods, rolling meadows, crashing waves and native perennials clinging to the side of the road.

While rushing out to enjoy sunny days is second nature, slowing down can be the best way to take in the rays and the view.