Friday, June 19, 2009

a bowl of vegetables... or the gardener?

Going away for vacation for two weeks in the middle of June is a bad idea when you are a gardener. Especially when those two weeks happen to be a hot spell that make your peas, lettuce, basil, and tomatoes overtake everything else in your garden. Especially when your peas are supposed to grow to 8 or 9 feet tall and you haven't put up anything for them to climb on yet! 

This first year of my gardening life has been a steep learning curve. Thankfully, Rodale's Encyclopedia to Organic Gardening and my friend Bob at The Natural Gardener have answered many of my crazy, first-year gardener questions. And now, I am learning that when you plant all of your seeds, you end up with a crowded, overgrown, and high-maintenance garden. I guess I'll live and learn? That is, if my tomatoes and peas live to produce... well, tomatoes and peas. 

The best part, though, of having an overgrown garden, is that you can start harvesting even the smallest arugula leaves and the earliest snap peas and the slightly-not-ripe-yet cucumbers, knowing that when the rest of it comes ripe, there will be plenty to go around! So, in July and August I will have an abundance of vegetables in my proverbial bowl, like the picture on the left. And, I will probably feel much like the fellow on the right - vegetables turned upside down, with a tin bowl on my head. 

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