Thursday, August 25, 2011

I MISS MY GARDEN

Did any of you get your garden planted this year? Unfortunately we didn’t and boy do we miss it now. Our garden spot was a slough until the middle of June so that pretty much convinced us to abandon those plans for the year. After it dried up we threw in a few onion plants and we’ve got one patio tomato plant. Big whoop. Not that we had a huge garden before but it was a nice little patch that provided us with a lot of fresh produce over the years.
I miss the produce and Deb misses the garden. Her garden was her sanctuary. She always did the planning and the planting and she even misses the weeding, if you can imagine. You know, you can take the girl out of the farm but you cant’ take the farm out of the girl, eh? Me? I just miss eating the stuff.
Actually, we make a pretty decent team when it comes to the gardening. She grows the stuff and I deal with a lot of the finished products. In fact, one year we had such a bumper crop of tomatoes that we had salsa, chili sauce, spaghetti sauce, tomato soup, canned tomatoes and anything else that you could make with fresh tomatoes coming out of our ears.
The biggest problem that year was that Deb was on crutches, with her leg in a cast after breaking her ankle in a GOLFING accident, yes, you read that right, a golfing accident, (a story for another time, though), and I had one arm in a sling from shoulder surgery. Of course, this was back in the days when it didn’t take the medical system more than a year to get something fixed on you, but I digress. Anyway, here’s the one-legged lady and the one-armed man struggling with basket after basket of tomatoes while trying not to become another injury victim in their very own kitchen. I believe we got everything made with nary a new scar.
It was always an August treat to get the fresh peas from the garden and make up a big batch of “zoldborsoleves scipetke tesztaval”, or green pea soup with pinched noodles for you non-Hungarians. In fact, I couldn’t stop thinking about that soup so this weekend I made a big pot of it substituting the Green Giant’s baby peas for garden fresh. It was close but not quite like it could be, you know?
I don’t know of a market-garden nearby and I don’t know of many people with an abundance of garden-fresh produce this year so I had considered climbing a fence or two to seek out some fresh peas but I haven’t raided a garden since the summer of ’71, or so, and I’m a little beyond fence climbing right now anyway; so the Green Giant’s garden it was. Again, it was close, but it wasn’t garden fresh despite what the bag said.
That’s the thing too though, isn’t it? If you were one of the fortunate ones to have persevered and to have gotten your garden planted and are seeing the fruits of your labours coming forth now, then you had better consider a live scarecrow or two for that garden. It won’t just be the birds that you’ll be looking to keep out of there this year.
So if anyone sees a 6’3”, 230lb limping man schmutrooking, (as my Mom would say), or lurking, around their garden patch in the wee small hours of the morning, it won’t be me. It might look an awful lot like me but it won’t be me. Trust me.

“The best fertilizer is the gardener's shadow.” ~Author Unknown

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