The Spring Garden

The garden is quite large, 60 by 160 feet. That's a lot of dirt to till, so we hired a big tractor to do the job right. With the soil freshly turned under, Mr. Mule went to work laying out the rows.  Row after row after row we planted. Two rows of new potatoes, a row and a half of peas, one row each of ocra, pumpkins, watermelon, butternut squash, zucchini squash, yellow crook neck squash, another row of vidalia onions, a dozen tomato plants (4 different varieties), 8 half-rows of silver queen corn, a half-row each of eggplant, rutabagas, carrots, spinach, romaine lettuce, bell peppers in red, yellow and green, pimentos, beets, three cucumbers and  44 sweet potato plants. On large pots on the back porch are two jalapenos, one tomato plant  and one habanero. Collard greens are still growing in the flower garden in the front yard. Why plant so much? Why not? There's not really a whole lot to do up here, especially if you're tethered to the house like we are, and free vegetables might be an incentive for people to visit.  We strung up aluminum pie pans to fly in the wind to keep the birds off the tomatoes and a scarecrow mostly for "ambience".  When I was putting up the post and cross arms it looked like we were preparing for a crucifixion.  Seeing as how we were deep in the Bible Belt and it was Good Friday, I took it back down and angled the arms slightly to look less religious. We dressed him up, put a hat on his head and named him Peabody. He's holding up a string of empty beer cans that blow around in the wind.

Sure enough, just as predicted, food started popping up out of the very same holes where we put these little bits of stuff just a few days earlier.  Amazing!  And what was REALLY impressive is that the food that came poppin' up out of the ground looked exactly like the picture on the label. I don't think that's a coincidence. What I wanna know is how do those little bits of stuff know how to make exactly the right kind of food? Kind of creepy, if you ask me, but we ate it anyway.

The garden was looking good.  We bought a cheap little tiller made by political prisoners in China. (our own government says China is a "most favored nation", so it must be OK).  It sounded like a million bees loudly buzzing around and I'm sure it really annoys the neighbors but it gets the job long as the weeds aren't too big.  As luck would have it, CapmWoody had a yacht delivery to do which would take the whole month of May, which meant that the garden would have to go basically unattended for about five weeks. We knew that the weeds would be bad when we got back, so we tediously scoured the garden for even the smallest weed, figuring that the fewer weeds when we left, the fewer weeds when we get back.  At least in theory it sounded good.

To keep everything alive, I needed to set up an irrigation system to wet everything down while we were gone. It was a simple system of five sprinkler heads, each elevated on a pipe covering different parts of the garden.  It's a good thing I did because the day after we left began a two month drought. By the time we left, the peppers were ripening and the squash was in full bloom.  Another few days and the squash would be ready and the corn was already waist high.

Peppers   Lettuce  Cucumbers

God only knows what we'll find when we get back.

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