Carrots Love Tomatoes...

| 1/25/2018 8:52:00 AM

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I am not a master gardener. In fact, I'm really not much as an amateur. I grew up in a world where the outside belonged to men and the house was the woman's domain. Daddy was the gardener, and I would even venture to say that he was a self-taught master. I never saw his garden fail. Daddy taught me cattle management, hunting, some electrical skills, some mechanical skills, but never gardening. Those other skills were fun to Daddy. It was knowledge he could pass down to me. But gardening was work, and that made it his job. Mom and I could harvest the garden and put up the produce, but outside physical labor was not for the delicate female. In consequence, his master gardening skills went with him when he passed. Oh, he would have gladly talked to me about it if I'd had the sense to ask. But in my younger days gardening was the last thing I was interested in.

Now, I find myself in middle age, unemployed, and back on the farm. The stock management has stood me in good stead with the sheep. We always had chickens, which did fall in mother's domain, so I have the knowledge required to raise my own flock. It is gardening that is the challenge. Daddy always made it look so easy. But we have been at this for few years now and have yet to be successful enough to allow me to put up the produce. Working full time was one handicap. We planted on the weekends, visited the garden before work, and again afterwards, but there just wasn't time (or energy) to really get down to the details that make a garden a success.

To begin with, there is the soil. Each plant family needs a different type of soil with different nutrients. Tomatoes needs lots of calcium, but cabbages do poorly in a calcium rich soil. And then there are the personalities to deal with! Did you know that not all plants get on well together?

This year I decided that since I am home full time now, I would devote myself to a thorough study of gardening and see if at last I could be as successful as Daddy. My first task was finding books on the subject. I am not a YouTube person, I can't stand sitting for hours in front of the computer, and I refuse to have a kindle. I want a real book I can hold and study and flip back and forth through the pages comparing notes. The books I eventually settled on are The Encyclopedia of Country Living (found at, Growing Fruit and Vegetables (by British master gardener Richard Bird – found at Discover Books ), and Carrots Love Tomatoes & Roses Love Garlic (found at and Discover Books .

1 Garden books

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