Writing Prompt Story Starter: Gardening

This week’s Story Starter is about gardening.

Gardening can be a pleasure and a chore. It can be seen as time consuming or as a great way to spend your afternoon.

Taking care of plants is a way to reconnect with our roots and with nature .

Keeping a plant alive: it’s a lesson

In gardening and life, there is a lot that can be learnt. If not, we wouldn’t have so many proverbs and quotes singing gardening’s praises. 

To quote a few favourites of mine:

“Life begins the day you start a garden” – Chinese proverb

“April showers bring May flowers.” – English proverb

“A garden is always a series of losses set against a few triumphs, like life itself” – May Sarton

“You can cut all the flowers but you cannot keep spring from coming.” – Pablo Neruda

“In nature, nothing is perfect and everything is perfect.” – Alice Walker 

What invaluable lessons could your character learn through gardening?

Gardening is therapeutic

Taking care of plants is sometimes seen as an alternative way to meditate. In fact, I find that my thoughts drift away so easily when weeding, I would recommend it as a natural creativity boost!

Furthermore, taking care of plants is also learning to be responsible and accountable.

It could consequently create a much-needed routine for your character and help them overcome their struggles.

New friends in the garden

Last but not least: gardening can be social. Can your character join a gardening group? It could be in their town or village, or on social media. Groups are the perfect place to exchange tips and seeds… and anecdotes! Another social bonding place could simply be your character’s allotment: how do they get along with their plot’s neighbours? People will talk about their passion for hours and gardening is a passion that transcends the ages. Your character’s encounters could be surprising. Could they meet a new love interest?

Could their new friendship be unexpected? What about the animals furrowing their garden?

Drawing a parallel with companion gardening

Companion planting is a process of growing certain plants close to one another, to promote their growth. It is learning about the compatibility of some plants, as opposed to others, to help them thrive. Could you draw a parallel with your character’s story?


To choose another “Friend” Story Starter, click here.

Manon Gandiolle