Change #88: Planting My Two Baby Gardens

At 9 PM the day after summer solstice and it’s finally happened.

Something that I’ve meant to do for years. I’ve planted a somewhat bigger pretend garden in boxes, that sit on my deck.

Several years ago we had a birthday party for my husband and in an effort to make my home as inviting as ever for our future guests, I planted some tomato plants in ceramic pots and placed them on our deck, and hung some baskets that contained spices over the balcony.

I felt as if I had achieved the impossible. For once, I was finally getting into making my home feel warm and inviting for friends and family.

Except, one of the spices that I planted was parsley. I had purchased it several days before planting it and left it on my front step. I noticed each night I came home there was less and less of my parsley. I assumed it was the bunnies and made an effort to get it off the porch and into the hanging basket sooner rather than later. (It would be out of reach, was my thought.)

It turned out it wasn’t just the bunnies. Once in the basket it still disappeared and it disappeared rapidly.  Until there was none left. My basil and oregano remained but my parsley vanished into nothingness to my annoyance. A co-worker of mine at the time, who was an avid gardener, informed me when I told him about my vanishing parsley that all animals love parsley. (DID NOT KNOW THAT!)

But I too, love parsley. I use it in just about everything I make, whenever I can be bothered to cook. That summer I STILL had to buy it from the grocery store.

That same year each one of my tomato plants that managed to produce tomatoes (and they were few) had a brown spot on the bottom. A few days after my hubby’s party I noticed one tomato that looked like it may make it; and I waited somewhat impatiently for it to ripen. Nonetheless, I waited.

One night as my hubby and I sat on the back deck I announced to him triumphantly, I am going to eat that tomato! I planted those plants, and watered them all summer, and I’ve worked for that tomato! It’s mine! 

As soon as I announced my intention towards my precious tomato, Hershey sitting on the grass below got up nonchalantly, meandered up the the stairs, put his teeth on MY PRECIOUS TOMATO (too which my hubby and I began giggling, as we couldn’t believe Hershey may actually have understood our conversation), yanked it off, ran down the stairs with it, and EAT IT!

L. B. M.

Not cool. 

Over the last few years I’ve planted a few spices, but I never bothered with anything else. I looked longingly at my friends gardens that blossomed cucumbers, tomatoes, and garlic from their boxes in their backyards.  I wasn’t bitter about my earlier gardening experience despite my dog stealing my only tomato, and those thieving critters that waddled up to my hanging basket and gobbled down my parsley. I always meant to try to plant vegetables and spices again.

And here are those words you’ve already read so often – I never made the time. 

Tonight, I did it. I have tomatoes, cucumbers, oregano, fennel, and basil. (NO PARSLEY.)

I don’t know what will happen. I kind of shoved everything in a box, and then pulled out a ceramic pot that has a small crack along the side. But everything’s in and I think if I get my basil to work, (I love putting it in my scrambled eggs or omelettes! I don’t know why. It just tastes so good to me.) I produce one tomato that I get to eat, and one cucumber – I think we can call it a success.

(Tomato and cucumber plants are in the rectangular box. The slightly cracked ceramic pot contains my spices.)

***

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LBM, step away from the tomato plants!
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