Monday, May 10, 2010

Gardening is not for wimps

This year we got our act together and signed up for a plot in the community garden at the top of the hill. We liked the idea of growing some of our own food and thought it would be a fun experience for The Precious - a chance to dig in the dirt and look for worms and bugs. You know, good kid stuff!

I had a few doubts though about doing it this particular year...
1) Steve is really busy with work and doesn't get home before 6:30 on most nights but he assured me that he would help with it and do all of the hard work of planting.
2) When we actually had a backyard we tried gardening. Thankfully I don't have photographic evidence of our handiwork - it's too disturbing to think about. I think we may have gotten 2 tomatoes and a half a carrot out of the deal..
3) We like the farmers market so much we could just continue buying produce there and support the local farmers - who know what they're doing!
4)I'm pregnant and due in August. That's right, AUGUST! Which means that I'm not getting any smaller or bendable as the weather heats up. (please don't let it hit 108 degrees like it did last year!).

But...I was convinced in spite of my doubts and we now have a lovely plot.

 The leaves are wilting inside...

Steve came through and helped plant everything. We planted tomatoes, lettuce, strawberries, carrots, cucumbers, beans, squash, pumpkins and corn. Sounds impressive! In actuality it is the most pathetic little garden EVER! The tomato plants were beautifully healthy when they went into the ground - they've slowly shriveled each day... I think they're as embarrassed as I am since they have to sit next to this Russian guy's plot. His plot looks like he's planning on feeding his entire family for the whole year with produce that is worthy of a magazine spread. I sort of want to curl up and die too whenever he walks over to chat and look over my sorry attempts (he's really friendly but I can just see him shaking his head in...dismay and amusement as he walks away.).

We had a freeze warning this week so I knew I had to go wrap those suckers up (I'm concentrating on the tomatoes...if we get anything else it'll be a miracle because they're on their own! I got you into the ground, now do your thing or die - whatever!). I didn't make it there for the first night - that's right The Precious and I got a little sidetracked and couldn't make it to play with the bugs and worms! When I arrived before the second night there were the Russian Tomatoes all cozy in their plastic covered cages (hand made, by the way). My tomato plants just waved the white flag and begged to be put out of their misery. BUT, the nursery lady had shared her secret with me and I was prepared! "Just wrap the entire cage in plastic wrap and poke a few holes in it for ventilation." she told me. So I had my roll of plastic wrap and was ready to wrap...

1) It was windy - not a light breeze but a hurricane gale that was dropping the temperature each minute as it pushed the black rain clouds our way.
2) We've been to the garden plot all of 5 times which means it's no longer very interesting and The Precious has seen every worm and bug there is to see so she kept migrating back to the parking lot to see which car wanted to play Chicken with her!
3) I'm pregnant and getting bigger.
4) I bought the only roll of plastic wrap that has ever actually stuck to itself on the roll... Of course it didn't want to stick once I was actually wrapping - no need to poke holes for ventilation, they're getting plenty of air...

The Result: I share a picture with you in complete humiliation...  Ours is the plot in the foreground.  I'm going to make Steve go up and release the tomatoes from their torture chambers - I'm too embarrassed to face The Russian right now!

 Notice the trellis' in the background and the tilled dirt compared to our DRY and flat soil
- and that's not even The Russian's plot!

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