We also forgo here a discussion of the gardener/teacher analogy. Vygotsky exaggerates. Teachers are by no means all powerful in being able to change the social situation of their students, any more than gardeners are all powerful in producing effective modifications of the environment. The stereotypical gardening example underplays the extent to which gardeners are constrained by lack of money to buy fertilizer, taxed by the government, and are subject to the will of broad ecological processes. In this respect they are like teachers in their mixture of control, responsibility, and fluctuating, generally inadequate, resources.
Finally, as our sociological and historical colleagues will quickly recognize, our micro focus needs to be supplemented by an account of how the garden metaphor have been used to shape the history of governance as well as child rearing, which right challenges us to link our micro observations to the political as well as the ecological conditions of all gardeners
Rather than linger to take up these and many other issues that clearly need elaboration and proper paring, we invite readers to provide feedback on our overall proposal, and help us to evaluate how useful or worthless our suggestions might be. And of course, if you like any of these ideas, please steal them.