Thursday, 11 August 2011

Garden Calamities

Our garden has been doing so well.  Each day, the kids and I are thrilled with the new growth and our harvest.

This is what we brought in the other day: zucchini, peas, beans and lettuce.

Between this and our basket of homegrown goodness from Harmony Growers, I haven't bought vegetables from the grocery store in, like, forever, and that makes my wallet very happy.

Check out our progress:

Our first head of broccoli popped up this week:

Our ill-fated corn blossomed:

And our cucumbers finally sprouted:

Can someone please tell me why my cucumbers are prickly?  Is this normal . . . will they outgrow it like Mr. Level-Headed suggests?  Or, have I created the next weapon of mass destruction in our humble, little garden?  I can see it now, hordes of ruffians rampaging Shenanigans Inc. to nab their very own lethal cucumber in order to prick their arch-nemesis(es) to death.  Hmmm . . . interesting plot line or simply the ramblings of one soggy, housebound housewife desperate for a little sunshine and beach time with her kidlets?  You decide.

Anyhoo, I digress . . . as usual.

Ooh!  And our tomatoes decided it was time to spring forth . . .

Can you tell I am not an expert photographer?

All was well until I, the clueless gardener, decided to head out in the rain to tend to my garden. 

Photo taken by Zoe dearest from the safety of our warm, dry kitchen.
I have no idea what I am doing with my hands, or why I included this photo.

 Okay, who I am kidding, I was taking a breather from the hi jinks of my wee minions, when I decided it was  time to choose the fate of my pumpkin plants.  You see, I had two strong pumpkin plants growing side by side, and I knew that if I wanted an actual pumpkin to grow then one of them had to go.  I kept putting this decision off because it seemed so Darwinian, only the strong survive, and I hoped that nature would intervene.  But in a state of soggy-brain delirium, I mustered up the courage and took matters into my own hands.  From my observations, the plant in the back was the strongest so I grabbed the other plant and yanked her out.  Then I began to pull and pull and pull because, you guessed it, all those lovely vines that were growing along the backside of my garden and I had assumed were growing from the other plant, had, in fact, originated from the plant in my hand.  Oh, the horror!  Then, I discovered the beginnings of two little pumpkins on one of the vines.  I felt sick to my stomach.  I dragged the once lush and lovely plant to our compost pile and wept a silent tear.  As I entered the house with my head hung lowly, I told Zoe about my massacre and like, the loving, understanding daughter she is, she soothed my aching heart:

"Well, it only makes sense that the front plant would be the strongest, mom . . . duh!"

I love you too, dear.

As desperate as all that sounds, I have moved on and now congratulate myself for being a gardening superhero, or an advocate for all things tiny. I laugh in the face of bully plants, who plot an evil garden coup by unleashing their tentacles in all directions to usurp the sun's energy, and I stand up for the little guy.  I gave the tiny pumpkin plant a chance in his hour of need before he could be blotted out beneath the shadow of his oppressor. 

Grow, little pumpkin plant, grow!

Unfortunately, the devastation does not end there. As I headed out to my garden the other morning for my daily check and daily zucchini retrieval, I was greeted by this . . .

Toppled bean plants and fallen peas.  One huge, green mess!


What happened?  My guess is one, brief but very intense game of tag between a pesky little chipmunk and this guy:

"Who me?  I would never do such a thing". 

But upon further interrogation, his tune changed . . .

"Yeah, I ran through your garden.  Watcha gonna do about it?"

Yes, what am I going to do about it?  The bean plants are easy to stand up again, but my peas are so heavy and so entwined with the mesh I used for them to grow along, the plants snap each time I straighten them up.  Grrrrrrr! 

By now you are probably desperate for this tale of woe to come to its happy conclusion, but we are not through yet.

Picture this.  A happy family sitting around the dinner table with three young missionaries from their church enjoying a spaghetti dinner and garden fresh salad.  Being the gracious host I am, I waited until everyone else had served themselves some salad before I took my portion.  As I placed the salad tongs in the bowl, my eyes were drawn to a grayish brown blob on one of the salad leaves.  A SLUG!!  I looked around the table at my guests to see them happily shoveling salad into their mouths, and I cringed.  What do I do?  Should I warn them, or should I scoop up my tiny friend in a napkin and nonchalantly escort him to our compost bin without anyone being the wiser?

"Um, just a reminder to everyone that the salad is garden fresh, and although, I washed it REALLY well, it has been pretty soggy out there so just be on the look out for any hidden sources of protein in your salad.  Ya know, just saying."


And there you have it, my week of garden calamities.  Hopefully, this rain will finally come to an end, and life here at Shenanigans Inc. can go back to being all sunshine and unicorns.  Hmm, perhaps this is what Scouty was chasing?  Just a thought.

tee hee!

1 comment:

  1. Oh the adventures of gardening! :) Prickles on cucumbers are normal (I know, I was shocked the first year we grew ours) but unfortunately they do not grow out of them. They will be prickly when you pick them, but you can rub them off (I usually do this when I am washing them) before eating. Happy growing!