I guess I'll be going another year without my own vegetable garden. My brother and his girlfriend thoughtfully gave me a shiny new set of garden tools, a seed starting kit, and a whole whack of wonderful seed packets for my January birthday.
I was pumped! I envisioned a long, cozy winter spent planning a fabulous garden, racks of adorable seedlings sprouting in sunny windows, bounties of delicious organic produce all summer long. I started hoarding pots and greedily considered indulging in a little greenhouse. In my imagination, I was Martha - all gum-booted up, wielding bypass pruners and smugly harvesting my third crop of mesclun.
But then winter wasn't exactly as long as it seems....and gee, the dogs will surely knock over any trays of seedlings if I leave them by the window...and, oh...you mean I have to dig?
While I fretted about where to put grow lights and worried about starting seeds too early, all my starting deadlines were whizzing by. Never mind, I reassured myself. Direct sow is the way to go!
The May long weekend arrived - Ontario's Biggest Gardening Weekend - when spring fever hits and everyone suddenly has a green thumb. I'm no different, right? I can garden with the best of them. After all, we've got all this land and not having a single edible thing growing on it was getting embarassing.
If I was going to get these seeds in the ground, this was the last weekend left to do it. So I got some stakes and plotted out a reasonable size garden. Full sun. Close to the house and a water source. Not too big, just like Martha told me. I even went to our landfill site and loaded up my car with the inexpensive but awesome compost they sell.
OK. Now the only thing standing between me and my bounty was removing 100 square feet of sod, tilling the soil, working in the compost, plotting out the beds, sowing the seeds, fencing everything in and praying for germination. All in one day.
And it was starting to rain.
Then I remembered from the internet that you're not supposed to try and turn wet soil. I could really hurt myself. That wouldn't be good.
Not good at all.
Then I remembered another way to grow vegetables. Tidy little boxes that require no digging and hardly any watering. Not exactly what Martha would do, but I could still have my homegrown bounty.
Yes! That's it!
But then I remembered that our local grocery store has a pretty nice produce section. Lots to choose from. A cheap organic mesclun mix. And no praying. :)
If I still have a scrap of dignity left - I might try this.
And although my seed starting kit will have to wait until next year, I christened my new tools, attempted to regain my confidence, and accumulated a credible amount of dirt under my fingernails by planting these:
Pretty window boxes full of tuberous begonias, assorted coleus and...uh...a vine-type-thing.
Sorry, I'm not a gardener. :)