Deep Roots Require Patience
We are the people of the deep roots. We understand that healthy native plants dig deep. Unlike the 2-3 inches for conventional turf grass, our plants are explorers—plunging through sand, sandy/loam, rocky clay—foot after foot. We know that this requires patience, because plants that are exploring so hard and building friendships with mycorrhizal fungi need time. We know that we have to be patient. We need to nurture the little green bits, which show up on top of the soil. We have to believe in what we cannot see. We need to water seedlings during periods of drought, because even though they are extraordinary plants, they need nurturing. When mature, our native plants soar. Taking their time in the spring, because they are also smart and don’t respond to the vagaries of spring, they move toward the sun, foot by foot. In autumn, it is still hard to imagine that all this luxuriant growth started the season at ground level.
Another thing sorts us patient folk from conventional gardeners. After we go to all the trouble of collecting native genotype seeds, nurturing the seedlings, fencing or spraying our gardens from deer predation, we build our burn brakes, gather our crew, secure a water source, and then we set a portion of it on fire every year or so. This is mildly counterintuitive to the average gardener.