Remembering 9/11 and My Garden Club

     So many memories come seeping into my consciousness on this tenth anniversary of 9/11.  As many people do, I remember exactly where I was on the morning of September 9, 2001.  I had just arrived with two other women for a garden club board meeting at a member's house.  As we walked in, the TV was on, and others already there asked if we'd heard what happened.  The first plane had struck the world trade center.

plane hitting the second tower

     We all sat down to watch the news, riveted to the TV.  We forgot about the meeting.  We watched in horror as the second plane struck the second tower.  Many members, including myself, immediately got on cell phones to call loved ones.

     Then the Pentagon was struck.  At that time I lived in Virginia, 13 miles from the Pentagon.  Three people who lived in my neighborhood who worked at the Pentagon died that morning.

Pentagon burning after being struck by a plane

     As time passed, my garden club, in its own way, helped members heal and bring some closure to the emotions and shock of that day.  We had as speakers at one of our meetings, the architects that had been chosen to build the 9/11 memorial at the Pentagon.  The architects discussed the design, explained why paper bark maple trees were chosen to be planted throughout the memorial, and told us about the grasses, black-eyed susans, echinacea, and sage that would be planted around the perimeter.  They talked about how each victim would be memorialized by a stainless steel bench over a shallow basin of circulating water.

Pentagon 9/11 memorial

     At another meeting, my garden club had as a speaker a woman whose husband had died in the Pentagon on 9/11.  She explained how getting up every morning and going out to her garden to sit and then to work had saved her sanity and helped her process her grief. That garden had saved her life, she said.

     Our gardens bestow satisfaction, joy, exercise, good food, and beauty.  But, as I and other fellow gardeners know, they also bring peace.

Pentagon 9/11 memorial lighted at night


  1. What a horrible and mindless tragedy the 9/11 one was. It's comforting to hear how some of the victims found solace in gardening.

  2. Anita, Thanks for your empathetic comment.