The sustainable garden isn’t finished in a day, but rather stewarded from one generation of humanity to the next. It may not save money, but hopefully the planet, it may not impress others, but hopefully heal your own soul back to the sate of wellbeing that only nature seems to be strong enough to restore. – Sakura Mendoza
Once upon a time a novice gardener who couldn’t keep a cactus alive on a window sill, took a chance and got started with tomatoes. 🍅
Many years later with two children gardening seems to stand in for traditional therapy which may or may not be needed to deal with the stress of life…
This is the garden now, a few months ago everything had seemingly “gone to seed”, during the rainy and cold winter of 2021 nothing was done by that woman (me), it was unknown if the whole garden would rot away or return to weeds, however, that was not to be.
That woman’s daughter planted koa tree seeds which would probably not sprout in a single pot in the broken, dirty and dilapidated green house. But actually they did sprout, vigorously, adding life to the hibernating green house and becoming the new beating heart of the garden.
Thus jealous of her daughter, that woman, decided to plant morning glories, hoping it would be easy as it was in a previous summer. What a fool. Planting morning glories in the winter… they were eaten by pests, hit by strong thunder storms, they grew slowly without dying, much like the woman herself, not dead, but not thriving either.
So that woman, having spent $10 on morning glory seeds, ambled onwards, curious about what ate her plants, not sure if they were or were not slugs, which needed to be dealt with for safety if she intended to allow her children to eat from and play in the garden, which she did.
While spending $10 on morning glory seeds she decided, as she is wont to do, to spend even more of her husband’s money on gardening supplies at the same time. This time she chose organic seascape strawberries, which she had had once before as a girl, when she wasn’t old yet. The strawberries were from a wonderful garden show, they lived in her small apartment window sill, she waited to eat the first berry, but it was not to be. For the plant was not watered when she went on vacation, and she didn’t learn the lesson she should have that her family would tolerate her gardening, but never really attentively water for her.
The strawberries came as cuttings, they were roots and stem base with no leaves, thus they survived the harsh process of being lifted out of their home, having all their fruit flowers and leaves severed and being shipped in a box like a desperate refuge or unfortunate trafficked slave worker.
The strawberries came with a card from Rebok with his personal cell phone number, guaranteeing that if the instructions were followed they would live.
So that woman decided she would try to grow the strawberries just for fun, and education, and a good time, but she wouldn’t worry about the slugs until the strawberries started fruiting.
The strawberries did well, that woman finally sourced local gardening soil, Kellogg’s organic soil and steer manure and Kellogg’s citrus soil blend that is sandy. Because Rebok had said the strawberries need good drainage (thus the sand mix). Steer manure instead of chemical fertilizer is a permaculture thing, would it work on a large scale, who knows? Is it silly, who knows? Is it what that woman does with her garden to feel sustainable? Yes, yes it is.
So, the strawberries were growing well in the greenhouse, would that lady just leave a working thing working. Nope. She left some strawberries there in the greenhouse (3) and moved most to a raised bed container garden in the woods, hacking away at weeds with wild abandon and a crazy zest for life in the rain, getting all dirty like a lady never would.
So, the strawberries started getting ripped up, by something mysterious. A large cut with a bite missing, and the missing bite spit out on the soil near the plant.
Slugs are around this amateur and cluttered garden, but slugs wouldn’t spit out the leaf, slugs typically make little holes or sometimes eat everything, but they don’t rip and spit out, that isn’t their normal modus operendi.
So what was it?
I think a chicken, or perhaps the tan, virile, rooster who roams right next to that particular garden bed at 5:30 AM?
But that woman would never, ever, really know.
The koa seedlings were moved to the new area, the Eastern part of the front garden, the week after they moved sudden storms came rolling in and a smarter garden would have taken them back to the greenhouse, but that woman was not that kind of gardener, she liked to live foolishly and gamble with trees as she would never, never do with money or lovers.
Soon that woman’s husband was going to visit, so she cleaned up the house and the garden as if to perpetuate a lie that she was a neat person with tidy habits, rather than a carefree and scatter brained intellectual who was overwhelmed caring for her two kids before any cleaning at all was added to the mix.
In cleaning the garden that woman found irrational joy at rediscovering the fragments of her own soul as if they were scattered Zelda heart pieces which bit by bit strengthened her. She found her lost self under the dirty and clutter of the garden and as she restored it a bit of sanity stained her robe of pandemic insanity, which told her she couldn’t make time for her hobbies. It became stained so badly it had to be thrown away and her soul is now prancing naked in the garden from time to time devoid of excuses.
Blogging Note: I was going to write about the garden, check in with what was needing to be done last time, but I didn’t want to “post” it, I am fine having a blog with gardening and non-gardening topics all smashed together, but I don’t want the regular readers bombarded with the gardening topics, so the easiest way for me to handle that is by adding the story of the garden to the garden “page”, that way it’s there for whoever is into that kind of thing and it won’t shout at people who follow the other topics, but are not into gardening. Perhaps far into the future I could send out a garden recap or list that I updated the garden on the “home page”.
Made some videos today of the garden this winter (2021) in case anyone wants to see what it looks like (words aren’t enough for you people?).
🪦 Rest in peace to Mel Bartholomew the founder of Square Foot Garden, his book, the Square Foot Garden inspired me to start gardening and it is a strange feeling that he is gone after being such an active person in the garden world for so long. He recommended peat moss, some people are against that, I am undecided and I will have to find the answers on my own with Mel gone. He started me on gardening all together, veggie growing, composting, he opened this world to me, this green world. He also taught me the value of limits, he said something like “limits allow you to enjoy something even more though it wouldn’t seem that way.”