Just spent a few minutes dead-heading the marigolds in the yard. Of all the summer flowers, that is one of my favorites with their little sun spots of color and powerful perfume that the bees and birds love.
To give the coming and current blooms the most energy from the plant, the dying blooms can be removed in a process called dead-heading. Just snip the bloom off with your fingers. I go out and do that every week or so, and that is when you will find my pockets full of marigold flowers as I head back in the house to store my treasure through the rest of the year and into the next spring. I break up the heads so that the seeds can dry out and be stored. Then, after the most recent batch has dried, it takes its place in a glass jar to be held until the new spring comes.
Seeing these summer blooms drying up can be kind of a sad thought. It is a reminder of the opening and closing of life chapters in general. But, as I look at the pile of seeds ready to dry and be stored, I can’t help but think of the perspective lesson marigolds share. Life does present us with opening and closings, starts and finishes. The starts and finishes can be nerve-wracking, happy, grief filled, and joyous. Needless to say, I can go in fits and starts with openings and closings that do not regularly occur in an all smooth fashion. New things can make me nervous, even when I’m excited about them. And, some things I am very glad to see go, while others I miss very much.
But, marigolds remind me of how these chapter lessons are kind of like these seeds. The lessons can be dried out and stored for later. Carefully preserved to be re-planted later, as life seasons change, lessons will come in handy again. Planted in the next season, they not only re-grow from the seed of that original plant, but produces new seeds as well. Each season of planting and building, all from one dried up flower head holding marigold seeds.