How well does your garden grow?

I went a little crazy with my pre-gardening plans this year. I’ve started seeds and no longer have a spare room. That room now is a seedling nursery, with the bed and a table covered with little pots housing plants of every variety in excessive numbers.
It’s a bit like an all-you-can-eat buffet, where the eyes are bigger than the stomach and it is feared this may very well be the last available meal, ever, so the plate is piled high, too high. And as you walk to the car, your belly groaning and complaining, you ask yourself, “What was I thinking?”
It always seems like a good idea when the plan first is taking seed (pardon the pun). I would compare it to when I decide to take up jogging and the first day I run eight kilometres, after which I have difficulty keeping my legs under me and need support to manoeuvre the stairs the next day–and so ends my running career.
Or like when I was a kid and we grew potatoes commercially for several years. It was our summer job, my siblings and mine, to weed three rows every day. The rows were a quarter-mile long.
I would start out removing every weed and my row appeared pristine for the first 10 feet or so. But I soon was left behind and the notion of getting every weed didn’t seem like such a good idea once faced with reality of loneliness and delayed playtime.
It’s that moderation thing that I have no real relationship with, despite trying to get to know each other better.
My pumpkins are doing their impression of Jack’s beanstalk and I really hope a giant (friendly or otherwise) doesn’t appear in my space before I get the plants into the ground. The tomatoes are frighteningly tall, as if they are some kind of mutant planning to take over the world.
And my poor red onions look like they have crossed the Sahara desert without benefit of camel and/or water, though I think in this case, they probably have had their fair share of water and then some.
Damping off, the gardeners call it–a disease caused by a number of different pathogens that weaken seedlings after they germinate. I think weaken is an understatement. The little plants have collapsed over the edge of their container and look like they are taking their last breath, which I am fairly certain they are.
Ahh, life in the garden.
I am having fun with it, though, and it is energizing to imagine my garden bursting with life and food. The neighbour’s ducks like to sneak over at night and nip off the new growth, but I consider that a natural hazard and far prefer that to their pony-sized dog who thinks my yard is the better place to do his business.
I have considered flinging his deposits onto their deck, but that wouldn’t be very neighbourly of me. So, instead, I pretend “Gracie” is the culprit, though she would never use such poor choice for her bathroom habits.
I think I may be able to feed a small nation with the fruits of my labour.
I’ll try not to complain about keeping ahead of the weeds but I can’t make any promises.
wendistewart@live.ca

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