Much like the diligent gardener that painstakingly sows seeds and tends his patch in all kinds of weather, the season of political discontent is winding down and soon we will harvest what we have sown.

The political posturing has begun, or perhaps it’s never quite gone away in this age of social media, as the fall election looms.

But much like the green tomato that waits for the right moment to reveal it’s true colour, candidates and parties are biding their time for the perfect entrance into a race that will undoubtedly be mired in misinformation, propaganda and hidden agendas.

At hand are two parties, the Conservative and Liberals, who have identified the other as the ultimate evil should the voter be foolish enough to give them the nod. Choosing to be governed by their nemesis would result in a backward slide into the darkness that would be irreversible. The ultimatums are delivered in flashy commercials and online posts crafted by special interest groups, so called experts and keyboard warriors empowered and emboldened by the anonymity the little blue screen offers.

Keeping with the gardening theme, we as the creators, have fashioned this little plot to bear the fruit as it now hangs, un-ripened, on the vine of our political and national future.

The choice before us, do we pick the fruit of the two most dominant plants, or do we give room for a new variety to grow?

What is abundantly clear in the game of politics, and in the garden, is that should you turn your back for too long, it will grow out of control.

The option of looking away is no longer a viable excuse. The political climate and emerging environmental issues demand participation in the simplest of ways – paying attention and marking an X.

We have seen what happens when a delinquent custodian allows a beautiful, abundant paradise go to seed. The weeds took over and it became it a tangled mess. The orange squirrel ransacked the patch and is using what’s left for his personal nut storage facility.

We must not stray at this most crucial time, but rather get down on our knees and dig into the potential parties that are vying for our attention. Dig around, find out their roots, their qualities and potential uses. To understand a party or a policy you must examine it first hand, dig it out, wash it off and take a bite.

Should you like the flavour, that doesn’t mean you devour the entire crop, leaving no room for any other. A plate full of colour and choice is always more palatable and pleasing than a mound of monoculture.

As we wander into the garden of another election, a friendly reminder that this harvest is much the same as those before us, albeit with circumstances, problems and abundances of a unique kind. We have made choices in times of greater adversity in the past, but undoubtedly this edition will be of the highest importance, simply because it is in the present.

Don’t let the moment, the ultimatums, propaganda and fear mongering dissuade you from diving into the real meat of each party. Examine each with respect and pick the weeds in between to obtain a clearer view.

Should you take a look at the garden and see nothing but weeds, resist the urge to mulch it and turn it into a lawn.

The choices made this fall will determine whether it is a long, cold winter or an early spring.

– T.S.