Thursday, May 10, 2012

...make the garden grow

What a day, what a wonderfully bright, pungent with spring, beautiful, sunny day!

But we sleep in. At night, Isis was restless, Ed was tired after his bike ride and so I was the cat care person, down the stairs, up the stairs, coming Isis! Okay Isis! Ed was so deeply asleep that he almost didn’t wake to the loud crash of Isis being knocked off the bed by an overly generous sweep of a limb. Ed's limb. Isis knows to sleep on that side of the bed. I complain loudly when he wanders over.

But last night the cat fell off the bed and I felt sorry for him so I was a good caregiver. Coming Isis!

We ate a hurried breakfast. It’s a packed day for us. Tomorrow I pick up exams, but today I have a different agenda! 


Start putting in the tomatoes! (Two dozen today, many dozen more at another time)


...and plant the newly arrived variation on pink daylilies (goal: 24) and lavenders (goal: the entire 6).


The noon hour passes, the sun grows stronger.


Lee, our resident farmer, comes over to assess the land she’ll be planting. How is it? I ask her.
Lots of grass. She has a point. It will be several years before all the quack grass is tilled out of there.
What are you planting? - I ask.
Cucumbers! Big ones. Pickle cucumbers!
She walks past our veggie plot. Her friend is with her and they have a rapid exchange in Hmong and there are small giggles mixed in as well and it doesn’t take much to understand that she is amused at our efforts. She looks up at the sky and shakes her head.
I know! Not enough sun.
You come pick my peas. No need to plant.


Too late. We're invested in our beds.

Revised count: planted today: 28 tomatoes,  20 daylilies, 6 lavenders and various miscellaneous cheapies acquired at a Shopko sale – not so much because the plants themselves were tempting, but because these commercially grown perennials look so bedraggled and listless that it’s like going to an animal shelter and saving a cat or dog from a fate far worse than coming home with you.

The sun has set, the birds have settled. We eat our summer supper, which so often is accompanied by a baguette from the Thursday market...

La Baguette

Ed asks me – do you ever finish planting?
And I answer truthfully – yes. When we stumble into summer I am done. For me, there is a time for work and a time for reaping the benefits of work. My interest in digging the land diminishes as the soil gets harder, dryer, less forgiving, when the failed plants can’t be revived, not this year anyway, when the bugs drive us nuts, when there are other ways to enjoy the heat of the day.

 But for now, we work. Everyone who cares about what the earth produces works now. Late into the evening, until the sun sets.