We owe a debt of gratitude to John Muir and other visionaries that preserved portions of the wilderness and its complex ecosystems for creatures and humans alike. Muir petitioned the U.S. Congress for the National Park Bill that was passed in 1899, establishing both Yosemite and Sequoia National Parks and is often referred to as the “Father of the National Parks.”
“Muir has profoundly shaped the very categories through which Americans understand and envision their relationships with the natural world,” writes Steven J. Holmes, a Muir biographer. Muir also saw nature as his own home, as when he wrote friends and described the Sierra as “God’s mountain mansion.” John Muir related to the smallest thing within the grand scheme of great natural beauty. “The very stones seem talkative, sympathetic, brotherly. No wonder when we consider that we all have the same Father and Mother.” He considered the mountains home. I think it is fair to apply the metaphor to how I feel about the garden. It’s a place of comfort and safety. It’s a place of nourishment and quieting the soul. It’s important.
So as we celebrate Earth Day, Arbor Day and every day, I’m grateful for those that have helped us see, understand and honor our connectedness with Mother Earth. I leave you with this John Muir quote: