Tuesday, August 16, 2011

gardening day

 Give thanks to the Mother Earth.
Give thanks to the Father Sun.
Give thanks to the plants in the garden
Where Mother and Father are one.
Tuesday is Gardening Day.
   One end of our yard, just beyond the chickens, is dedicated to food production.  Mostly we experiment there with grand visions of acreage we may some day own.  Truly, experiment is the word.  We'd like to think of ourselves as gardeners and hope one day to produce most of what we eat on our own property, but I think those days might be farther away than we hope.
   Three years ago neither of us had really successfully grown any kind of crop.  These days we manage to harvest delicious tomatoes, lettuces, various greens, squash, blueberries, strawberries, onions, peas, beans, beets, potatoes and garlic.  Being novices, we're still working on the how-to specifics though.  That and figuring out interesting recipes for beets or tomatoes or zucchini or whatever we're inundated with briefly but intensely as each successive crop fills baskets, jars and bowls in our kitchen, pantry and basement. 
   Last year we planted garlic in the Fall and harvested in the late Summer (a little belatedly since some of the bulbs, although edible, were insufficiently protected by the dead outer layer).  This time around then, we decided to plant in Spring (because we'd been told the long slumber of the cloves over Winter really makes little difference) and we harvested today.  The leaves and stalks were about half green, half brown (which is apparently the optimum time to dig them up).  Alas, although the yield was again usable, our garlic was rather diminutive.  I'm guessing our tiny bulbs were, in fact, the result of the Spring planting. 
   Next year's garlic plan: plant in Fall; harvest mid-Summer.
   Good thing we've still got the Farmer's Market.

In my garden there is a seed,
I am the one who put it there.
Who will help it now to grow?
Earth and sun and rain and air.

 In my garden there is a flower,
From a seed it came to birth.
Who then helped it to grow so tall?
Air and rain and sun and earth.

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