Viva BioGardener!

Drought – It Is What It Is

Everyday, I get a text update on real-time flow of the Guadalupe River near Center Point.  At this stretch of its 230-mile existence, the Guad is only a few miles from its infancy as a series of springs west of Kerrville but strong enough to support a 6-pack sized kayak float during normal years.  This is not a normal year.

Guadalupe R. Behind Deitert Center, Kerrville Daily Times

One watershed over, Austin’s main holding tanks for drinking water are at 34% capacity.  The most upstream of those tanks, Lake Buchanan, is just 4 feet away from its lowest level since its creation.  Lake Travis is projected to hit that milestone by February 1, 2014.

But is drought really something to fear?  The climate changes we’ve experienced in the past few decades are miniscule when viewed on a certain time scale, like the one that shows Austin on the floor of a giant inland sea 100 million years ago.  Drought, and the changes it brings, isn’t good or bad.  It is what it is.  Drought shows us that hard times teach lessons that goods times can’t, and reminds us of things we may already know but tend to forget.

More is Not Always Better, Our Sweet Spot

BioGardener will not show annual revenue growth in 2013, a first for us.  Drought or economic changes have nothing to do with it – this is completely by design.  We’ve spent years pulling hard on the reins of growth, knowing that more is not always better.  We’ve also diversified our client base while staying true to ourselves, avoided stretching ourselves into something we aren’t.  We like us, and we like where we are.

Instead of growing insatiably for more of what we already have, we’re growing our enjoyment of the Present, which is more rewarding than mindlessly growing our Numbers.  And in this sweet spot we have developed for ourselves, we are busy.  A comfortable, productive, steady busy:

Native Backyard Woodscape, North Austin

East Austin Veggie Garden

South Austin Native Prairie/Woods

Condo in South Austin

Native South Austin Sunscape

No Greed, No Fear

We are thankful for this, and thankful that in our sweet spot we are free of fear.  Fear of drought, fear of stagnant growth, fear of a changing market, fear du jour.  This freedom is an easy trade-off for excessive profits, and gives us the ability and flexibility to do what we want, and do it well.  We are free from greed, so we are free from fear.

Like the South Texas rice farmers who have adapted to a different crop – like the White Horse Saloon who replaced a Tejano bar in a way that bridges old and new worlds in fast-changing East Austin – like Engel Farms who is transitioning to diverse organic vegetable crops and away from conventional monocultures of a single peach crop – like the Fredericksburg burlap supplier WoolSacks who started sewing coffee bags and leaf tarps when wool and mohair started declining in the mid-1900s – like Waterloo Records and BookPeople who invented a local social movement in response to national trend of slowing record and book sales.  There is no fear.

And here we are.  Busy as we want to be in August during one of the worst droughts in history, free and unchained by fear and greedy desire for more and more.  Challenge and change is nothing to be feared.  It is what it is.  And we’re thankful for it.

BioGardener Crew, East Austin


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