Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Time out for some gardening

I used to be a type A personality. Losing my husband a few years back blew that right out of me--there didn't seem any point, you know? But it probably doesn't help that when I'm head down in a project, I don't sleep and forget to eat--or overeat and walk around in a stupor wondering what day it is.

I tried to buy a house last year--before the Seattle market bounced back, only to have the sale fall through two days before closing. Short sales suck. It'd dragged on for almost six months while I could have been looking at other things, and I guess that's what bothered me the most. I'm stuck here for now--not a bad place, all things considered. I like the community and I have a great view of the Nisqually glacier from my living room. Sometimes it's like Rainier is so close, I can touch it. But I don't have property to dig around on and mess with like I'd wanted.

I found out about the community garden a couple of months ago and figured if nothing else, I'd get some air. Looking back on it, it was the best thing I ever did. Digging is therapy, and there's nothing like sitting in the middle of my garden--pulling weeds, thinking I did this. I made this grow. I have so much zucchini I can't use it fast enough, and my tomato plants are covered with tomatoes. The other day the guy two plots over pulled his new potatoes, handed me a bag and told me to help myself.

I'm an suburbanite born and bred. My dad grew some green beans once, but back in the seventies the big thing was lawn. Nice green bermuda grass with maybe a couple of junipers around the front door. Watching potatoes roll out of the ground was freaking weird. I kind of knew I was different from the other gardeners--mainly because they weren't carrying around a paperback copy of Square Foot gardening, but I'm such a newbie I have to google things like how to cook fresh peas, and how to use fertilizer. The other day, I got my peas home, shelled them and knew for certain--I'd done something wrong. My peas were hard like beans, and everyone (me in particular) knew peas are soft. You know? Like peas. I stuck them in a bag  and asked around only to find out other people ate peas in the garden! Like...raw. Without washing them or cooking them or anything. I said, "They're hard." And the person telling me how peas were like candy said, "Uh. That's the way they are. They need to be cooked to be soft." And I was like...dried beans?? Do they need to be soaked or something?

I like farmer's markets, but I buy fresh corn. Fresh corn is like the penultimate farmer's market treat. When I think of peas, I think Del Monte. So I pulled out all the pea plants, planted some green beans (got to stay true to my suburban roots) and got back to weeding. Love the wind blowing through the trees, Rainier on the horizon and sitting in the dirt. Not peas though. Peas come in cans.


Lisa said...

Good for you! It's great that you're out and about in your garden and enjoy it (as long as there are no peas involved).

I'm about to put together a wicking pot for some coriander seeds... I don't have a green thumb by any stretch of the imagination, but apparently a wicking pot is difficult to get wrong. :)

So, have you harvested anything from your plot yet?

Jodi Henley said...

lol, I threw out some coriander, not realizing that's what cilantro grows into. Great big armloads of shiny, just-ripe seeds that supposedly taste like citrus bursts. I thought it'd bolted and gone to waste. So far I've harvested about ten pounds of zucchini and a cucumber. And it looks like my tomatoes are starting to turn pink. Not much longer now before I have tomatoes everywhere. :)

I hope your coriander does well!