Gardening, what’s not to love…well there are a few things.

I have had a garden for as long as I can remember.  I have such great memories of growing zucchinis, beans, peas and cucumbers in my mom’s yard.  We had a specific area that every year was meant for the garden.  The back side was a huge wall of raspberries, the left were two big pear trees that never failed to produce, and to the right were random flowers and bushes.  I loved when the weather was warm enough for me to trot out there to make my mounds of dirt that would become the homes to my precious seeds.  It’s funny, but I don’t plant the way I did back then.  I no longer make mounds, poke three holes with my fingers and insert a seed into each hole.  These days I use seed trays, with one seed per cell.  I guess I do still use my finger to poke the holes for the seeds.

Now as an adult, the garden is mine and the seeds purchased are no longer limited to zucchinis, beans, peas, and cucumbers.  This is a good and bad thing.  The good is, I try growing new vegetables, the bad is, I try too many.  I also tend to plant more seeds of one kind than I really need to.  This is something that next year I am definitely not going to do.  When there is too many they all suffer.  The point of gardening is to GROW things, not to kill them.  This year I went way too cray cray with tomatoes.  I just kept seeing seed packets with tomatoes that I absolutely needed…  I really need to keep in mind the amount of gardening space I have, what actually grows in my area, what will I eat and use, and lastly, what I can actually take care of so that it thrives and produces that beautiful bounty I strive for.

I love seeing the signs that say gardening is like therapy, cheaper than therapy, good for you, etc…I know I’m a gardener, it’s something that I need to do.  I can’t imagine going a summer without having one.  My past two gardening seasons were pretty much failures due to a combination of factors.  One, the weather just didn’t cooperate, two, I had dirt brought in for my garden beds that was anything but optimal ( I later found out the issue was getting gardening soil that hadn’t been turned and matured enough), and thirdly, I had twins under two that needed me, and well, they trump some tomatoes.

This year, well this year I have high hopes.  Even though I’ve had to start a few seeds over, I currently have my second batch of cucumber seeds hopefully sprouting.  The first batch just didn’t thrive, they sprouted and then did this sad kind of growth and eventually died.  I love cucumbers!!  I need my cucumbers to grow!!!  That being said, I refuse to buy cucumber seedlings.  This year is the first year I haven’t purchased a single seedling to put in the garden.  I’ve grown everything myself, and I’m really proud of it.

I need to take pictures of the garden for another “garden glimpse”.  I actually have little tomatoes on the vine, peas that are slowly starting to pop up, artichokes that are screaming to be picked, and blooms on all my squash.  Now is when I need to take notes so next year I don’t make the same mistakes as this year.  I love radicchio, but I think I have a little too much growing using space that I should have planted other things.  I would have planted more lettuce and planted it earlier.  Next year…

Tonight, however, I bask in the bounty of my garden…

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My beautiful radishes that went into a pico de gallo I made, and the lettuce that was used in the tacos.  Yes, this is when I am so happy I’m a gardener and the spindly cucumber seedlings a distant failure of the past.  Even though I’m not Ed Hume or Cisco, I am a gardener.  I’m a proud backyard gardener that will hopefully produce more than just vegetables, but I’ll produce two more gardeners that will also go on to grow beautiful bounties in their own backyards someday.

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