This Old Garden

| 5/2/2017 10:14:00 AM

farm signI spent this morning working in my greenhouse separating tomato seedlings. I can never seem to throw any of them away when I thin them out. I carefully re-pot each one and hope for the best; I usually manage to save most of them. Then, when it comes time to transfer them into the garden beds, I am overrun and have a terrible time choosing the ones I want to keep. I always give the rest away to friends.

My tomato starts.

For a few years now, my husband and I have been doing raised beds. We fenced an area directly off of my picnic area and have built the beds a year at a time. Greg puts the composter in the frame and, when spring comes, simply opens the hatch and dumps the compost into the new frame. Then we finish it out with mushroom compost from the local grocery store. It’s a far cry from the way we gardened when I was a child. I often wonder what my Dad would think.

My garden today
My garden today.

Daddy grew up in the Depression Era. They grew or hunted all of their food. He learned to work in the garden as a small child, and consequently he was one of the most successful gardeners I've ever known. He planted by the signs of the moon and tilled the soil with an old-fashioned plow.

All of my life, Daddy kept a donkey for plowing. Usually the inevitable name was Kate or Jenny, except for one male donkey who was christened Jack. I used to love sitting for hours watching him work his way back and forth across the garden. I learned the names of all the equipment, and when I was old enough, he would let me help to harness the donkey out. I still have all of that harness equipment carefully stored away in our barn.