Daily Archives: July 6, 2012

If you squint your eyes and turn your head a little….

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I ran into a friend the other week who asked how the garden was growing. I replied back in a relatively negative way commenting on all the things that weren’t doing well. But truthfully, for our first growing season in a new garden, things are going just fine. Yes, there is still a large learning curve we have yet to round, but all in all, things are coming along quite well.

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The tomato patch is developing beautifully. Doesn’t it always amaze you year after year that just a few month ago you put a small speck of a seed in a little soil and now it’s grown to the top of your five foot high cages? Every year I’m in disbelief. New cages were in order.

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The peppers are setting on in profusion after a sprinkling of and watering in of epsom salts a few weeks ago. That gives them a magnesium boost and causes them to make more peppers. We’ve already eaten our first round of Padrons, they aren’t so spicy this early in the season.
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Even though we planted the onions much later than we normally do (in late Feb/early March I think?) they grew almost better than in years past. Before we planted in early January and they’d always bolt before it was time to harvest them, this year nary a one bolted. Maybe the key is to plant them late in this climate.
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As long as you stand back far enough the beans don’t look bug eaten, nor does the popcorn look like rabbits nibbled on them.

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Same with the kale, as long as you squint your eyes and turn your head a little to the left, this row doesn’t look bug bitten in the least.
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The escarole hasn’t been touched at all. I was worried that if the bugs didn’t like it then the boys certainly wouldn’t like it however, last week I made a pasta dish with escarole, spinach and chard from Chez Panisse Vegetables that the boys ate all of, even every last green! I couldn’t believe it. I need to save that recipe!

I guess maybe it’s hard in the garden not to get focused on the things not going well. You put so much effort into tending to things that when a rabbit comes and eats it straight down to the ground, or an unknown bugs wipes out an entire row of seedlings in a night, it’s hard not to let that frustration be our point of focus. But that’s the learning part of gardening, seeing what does grow well, what doesn’t, what your pests are and what diseases show up. Pretty soon, as each year passes, we’ll learn how this little patch of earth works, but for now it’s a practice of passing over the negative and focusing on what is doing well.

Happy weekend friends!

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