Sunday, May 15, 2011

Being a California Greenie

The beginnings of my summer vegetable garden.

I think now that Jerry Brown is governor it is a California law that you have to plant a vegetable garden in the summer.  I think if you don't, they put you in jail with all the people they've arrested for smoking.

Actually, the real reason to grow a vegetable garden here is in self defense.  In July and August everyone is running around trying to give away their excess zucchini, cucumbers, and yellow squash.  If you have planned ahead and grown your own garden you can say, in all fairness, "I'd really love some of those bell peppers.  But you ought to see the stuff I have growing my garden.  I'm just overwhelmed by it.  So I couldn't possibly.  But thank you so much."

So, I spent the afternoon putting in my tiny little garden and I'm exhausted.  I don't know why.  It isn't much as gardens go.

I put in four tomato plants, two pumpkin plants and a few cumcumbers.  I garnished it with a row of zinnias, just because I've always wanted to have a row of flowers in my vegetable garden and zinnias were bright and seemed to fit the bill.

I also added a bougainvillea against the fence between my back garden and the wild, uncultivated garden beyond it that belongs to Dr. Zara, the nice lady physician from Iran. I like the old seasoned redwood fence between our two properties and don't want to fix it. I thought a nice bougainvillea would grow and fill in a little and give her some privacy when she wants to eat outside at her picnic table. That part of my yard is mostly my service yard--my more formal garden is on the other side of the property.  So I'm contributing the bougainvillea in the spirit of Robert Frost ("Good fences ... etc.").

Once I got everything in, watered, staked, raked, swept, and fertilized, it looked pretty good.  But when I came inside, washed my hands and sat down to write this, I looked outside into my fancier garden and spotted the creature who will likely enjoy the vegetable garden most of all.

I might have to put a little fence around my vegetables, like Mr. Mcgregor.  On the other hand, there is usually more than enough for everyone--including the squirrels and the rabbits, so I'll hold off, at least temporarily.

Right now I'm tired, covered with dirt, and in need of a nice hot shower.  One of the true joys of gardening is the fun of getting all cleaned up afterwards.  

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1 comment:

Robin Chapman said...

P.S. My hoticulturalist friend Leslie (from the 7th grade) pointed out to me that those are dahlias, not zinnias. I'm not much of a farm girl it seems!