My Birthday and the Mary Garden

It’s official — I’m 50 years old today! My husband John, my mom, my family and all my friends have made this day wonderful! My husband and I are also celebrating our third wedding anniversary this month, and my mom’s birthday is in May. May is a special month for us!

I have learned from my husband, who loves the Catholic Church, that May is the Marian month, or the month dedicated to Mary. In her book, Through the Wild Heart of Mary. herbalist Gail Faith Edwards describes the tradition of the “Mary Garden”, which contains plants associated with Mary. My husband and I have decided to celebrate this special month by starting a Mary Garden on our terrace. For my birthday, John bought two statues of Mary, which now sit on our terrace. Plants will soon surround these statues.


Many plants are with the Virgin Mary, and even have names which honor her. Some of my favorite herbs, including thyme (“The Virgin’s Humility”),

rosemary (“Rose of Mary”) and basil (“Holy Communion Basil”), can be part of a Mary Garden.

Of course, roses and lilies have a strong association with Mary. Another Mary plant, the May blossom or hawthorn tree, is especially dear to me as an herbal tonic for the heart. I can’t wait to learn more about plants and herbs and their association with Mary. This month of May will be even more of a blessing than ever.


Enjoy this month of renewal! Maybe you’ll come up with some ideas for a Mary Garden of your own.


10 Replies to “My Birthday and the Mary Garden”

  1. Beautiful post Judith! Very lovely! Our blessed Mother has always had a special place in my heart, even when I did not confess to being Catholic; you do not have to be Catholic to love Mary…she is here for all of us as our spiritual mother. I have consecrated my heart to Mary as an affirmation of my own personal freedom and its realization. This fire of love for Mary and Jesus has ignited in my heart and for this I am grateful. Why? Because I held such a bitterness for women for so many years and this was a terrible, terrible mistake. An injustice if you will.

    And now, I embrace this beautiful fire that burns within me. And every time we look out at our Mary garden I will be reminded of this powerful, powerful love that God has allowed me to witness that He has for all of his children. A fire of love that will not ever be put out.

    I love you Judith! And I am grateful God has so blessed the world with the beautiful fragrance of femininity and for the beautiful Word Incarnate; Jesus through Mary.

    Happy, Happy Birthday Sweetheart!

    1. Cannot wait to see the garden. I have some friends who do that. My neighbor for one and her yard is beautiful. I know you and your husband will do a great job. God Bless, SR

  2. As a result of your post, I’m planting my herbs differently this year–creating a special container as my Mary Garden. I’ll find a small icon to place there as well. Thanks for sharing this, Judith. You’ve made a difference in the world

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