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Report From PIA – March 25

I was going to write about the Boston Flower Show today, but something much, much more important has come up. Someone I am friends with on facebook was put out yesterday when I posted a smartass comment about the Republicans, with a link to a Huffington Post article. She would rather see posts about gardening, she said, than feel alienated by my political distain.

I know just how this facebook friend feels. I have other connections on this social networking site whose conservative politics make me cringe. Worse are the angry, hate-filled comments their posts elicit, which cause me to worry about the sanity of my fellow citizens. Sometimes I write a response, but often I roll my eyes and move on. I do, however, find ways to tell these friends about the ways I value them beyond politics. Staying connected is important.

This goes far beyond gardening. As I thought about this blog entry I knew I could begin by talking about how I would never put some plants in my garden that you might love in yours. For example, a caller to GardenLine recently mentioned how lily of the valley was a great groundcover for shade. I said that I hate lily of the valley because it takes over and looks like hell from July on. There was lily of the valley at Poison Ivy Acres when we moved here, and it was one of the first things I ripped out.

We have different preferences and beliefs that reach far beyond which plants we choose for our landscapes. This is an important issue because it speaks to the future of the entire world.

We need to find a way to live with each other. We have to be able to be neighbors, fellow countrymen and world citizens even if we have different political or religious views. End of story…or it will be the end of us.

I may not love or write about the plants or politics you think highly of, but we can still embrace the fact that we’re growing our lives together here on the third planet from the sun. We can move way beyond your love of lily of the valley and my disgust with the Republican Party, and find all of the other ways we connect. A peaceful world depends on it.

Tomorrow, the Boston Flower Show, I promise.

Today as I walked the flower show with Lynn Felici-Gallant, of, she loved the displays with moss and stone. I merely liked them. As the Paul Simon song goes, "One man's ceiling is another man's floor." In the flower show, the garden, religion and politics this is so true.

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