Sunday, February 20, 2011

Gardening: How our Garden Grows

How about having a granddaughter as excited about gardening as I am?

The back yard was full of clutter, well I mean, weeds sprouting amongst the grass, but to my granddaughters it was still a wonderful place to be. Both helped me organize the backyard furniture and one helped me garden. You see it was a pleasant 80 degrees outside today with a gentle breeze that stroked the wind chimes. It was perfect for washing cars and gardening, so that was exactly what we did. Juan, my son had the girls help him wash his beautiful car while I simultaneously finished cleaning my car's interior with Armour All and a vacuum cleaner. Once finished we rested out front drinking some lemonade and snacking on some homemade chocolate chip cookies.

Then Zee wanted to enjoy the fresh air but in the back yard and she asked me about my garden, so I looked for my hoe and a little shovel for her to use. We cleared out the area where I had my plantains that had gotten burned with the cold weather. To my surprise, both plantain plants had two small new plantains coming up hidden behind some curled up brown leaves! That is wonderful because it would have been a loss to me if they hadn't had these two new shoots.

My garden runs parallel to my house and receives early morning sun and shade in the afternoon. So, I really wanted to add more area to that garden and plant more veggies. To do that I needed to lay down additional boards, and clean out more area which was overrun with weeds. In that rich soil, I wanted to plant many new plants. Some of those plants are jalapeños peppers, tomatoes, squash, beans, lettuce, cilantro, green peppers, and ajies. This last one you might not know. Ajies are small tasty peppers that enhance Caribbean cuisine with out making it hot.

In order to make room for all those plants, little Miss Zee and I had to turn a lot of soil and get rid of numerous weeds. The best part of the afternoon though was just hearing her comment about the fact that it would be very boring if all she did when she came to visit was to sit and talk all day and play wii. She insisted that she needed to be doing something! Isn't that wonderful? To think she wanted to help me do something, I already knew I needed to do. Then to have her encouragement and delightful conversation was wonderful! She chatted along sharing about things she had learned on Ruff Ruffman. She had learned about buoyancy and we talked about what determined which things could float. I loved hearing how she had surprised her teacher by knowing about the topic. High level thinking while dealing with dirt and an occasional spider. All the while, I cleared off the area. The soil is now loose and ready to receive some healthy seeds.

Now when we plant tomorrow, and later as the days go by, I can send her updates about how our garden grows. I am so looking forward to those conversations, about how plump and red our tomatoes will be and how her raspberries fare in Penfield. Gardeners sharing; makes me smile.

Mi jardin florido florece.

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