Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Earth Day Week

Two weekends ago, Ruby and I planted our garden. This year, we turned the deck into a big patio garden with potted plants. My parents backyard doesn't really have anywhere to plant a real garden and this way when we find a house I can take everything with me. I've been waiting all winter to plant my garden. The idea of fresh pesto and off the vine tomatoes fill my dreams all winter long. Seriously. This year we aren't doing the co-op for a few reasons and I'm really going to miss it. I know my husband won't miss each weeks mystery greens on his plate at night, but I will. I'm already planning a stop by some local farmers markets to pick up some chard and collards. I'm salivating again.

The two people who taught me to love planting a garden are no longer just a phone call away for me to compare tomato species. And I can't just drive over to my grandmothers house to see how many squash and zucchini plants my uncle talked her into planting this year and then laugh about how she said she wasn't going to do it after last years overly fruitful crop. And I can't go by her house on my way home from work to find her outside in her "work" clothes, SAS sandals and sunvisor picking green tomatoes to fry me for dinner. And I can't talk about the latest Bon Appetite or Food&Wine issues with my Uncle Harold over a gourmet dinner that he made with fresh ingredients from out back. I miss them both terribly. Terribly. But I'm so glad they passed on their loves to me. So while we planted I couldn't help but remember them and be thankful. And because Mama Jackie always said to do it, I plant two of everything for cross pollination and use marigolds as bug deterrents. If she said it, I believe it.

So, Ruby helped me plant. I used the word "help" very loosely. But I wouldn't trade it for anything. We planted Better Boys, Romas, Japanese eggplant, jalapenos, banana peppers, basil, parsley, sage, thyme, oregano, rosemary and cilantro and strawberries. I've still got some okra and squash that I need to find a place to put in the ground. And I'm going to make one more trip to get some cherry or grape tomatoes because best friend Kelly loves them so much. It wouldn't be summer without her eating them straight out of the colander in the sink as we talk. Next year, or maybe even this year if I get around to it, I want to do some lettuce, greens, and root vegetables. And maybe some beans. My dad is working on starting a greenhouse at the lake property so with a little more research we might have our hands really dirty in the next few weeks. I'll keep you posted. For now we will water and wait.

P.S. I have my eye on a composter for the back yard. And a pet bunny for all organic manure. Please pass this info to my husband if he should happen to ask you for suggestions for an appropriate Earth Day gift for his hippie wife.
This is what happens when you put a pretty pretty princess shovel full of manure in your mouth. Not fun!

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