May 17th Update: They cancelled my surgery. Now I have to wait, again. I have no idea when it’ll happen now. I don’t know when the blog will resume, bear with me, dear reader.
This post was typed on the 13th of May.
You thought that the Jack posts might slow with my upcoming surgery? Hah! Never, I’ll haunt you until the end of days, dear reader. Just when you think you out-distanced Jack, then there I’ll be, right beside you, waxing eloquent on basil. We’ve actually had very hot weather for well over a month, no rain whatsoever. I’ve been out everyday watering and watching the soil get drier and drier. Thankfully it’s broken now, the rain, gentle thankfully, came and I couldn’t believe the difference, the plants seem to have almost doubled in size. I’ve kept them healthy, but I could only do so much with the hose, they must have been deeply rooting in search of water and now the plant’s top can reach for the skies.
I will have to be careful after the surgery, no heavy lifting for Jack. I’ve filled all the pots I’ll need and since the sweet potatoes don’t seem to be available this year I’ve placed two squashes, harlequin of course, into the raised bed and added another in yet another pot. I have two empty pots and three Table King in waiting, I should have them down before I depart. I was worried that the weather would be too harsh, but someone seems to be smiling down upon Jack. It might seem silly to worry about, but this is five months work and I’d hate to see it fall apart, thankfully I have people to watch it for me.
I do have potato seedlings to contend with, it seems if they were in the soil once there’ll be there for life. Thankfully they’re easily pulled with with the weeds. I tell you, dear reader, you’re better letting the weeds get big enough to pull as pulling thin shoots is a pain and pointless. As long as they don’t overrun anything you don’t have to worry too much. A weed free garden is a pipe-dream sadly, but you learn to manage them.
This year I’m getting a bit interested in edible roots. I wouldn’t go a’foraging as they spray a lot in this area and the last thing I want to do is get ill for the sake of eating weeds. I was actually watching a cooking anime and they mentioned how prevalent roots are in Asian cooking, but how they’re often shunned in Western cooking. Which is pretty true, I mean I’m growing horseradish, almost as a dare really, but I’ve never seen it for sale or eaten it before. I’m going to look into chicory as it seems interesting. I’d still stick with growing what I’ll eat, but also what I might eat. I have a mustard plant now, thanks to a neighbour so I’ll have leafy sandwiches for a while. I’ll also soon be ready to plant my spinach, even if I can’t eat it. It’s gone from little seedlings to small plants overnight.
A sad note intrudes. I lost my garlic due to the extreme heat, it spilt and started to sprout over again. It was just a month or two shy of maturing. Sadly this is also also a part of gardening, an unpleasant part, but one we have to accept. Almost eight or nine months worth of work for naught, but in those months there have been countless successes. You can’t just count each part as an individual, you have to view the entire garden as a life-form, each part working together, the whole greater than the single parts that make it up. The gestalt of gardening is bigger than we realise. When I spilled some compost today and saw all the life therein I was reminded that it’s not months, years or lifetimes. It’s all one moment, I might dig in March, but that soil has been there for years, has been amended, and will be, many times for years and years to come. One loss isn’t much when we think about it this way.
One of the really great parts of gardening is the sharing. Whether it be giving away seedlings or flowers you have too much of or just letting someone take a walk through and see all there is to see. Even better is having someone drop in a plant and a year or so later come back and see how it has progressed. There’s so much in my garden that was gifted or taken in over time that every plant tells a story of its own. And you know dear reader, that stories are made to be shared.
I do enjoy the fact that there’s a basil stage to my gardening. I love basil and the Genovese and Cinnamon are getting far ahead of the Dark Opal and the Thai is just starting. I’ve also added two large pots of Genovese and Cinnamon as I’ve found them the hardiest. It’ll be interesting to see how the greenhouse will fare as far as basil goes. I’ve been hit with cold weather and watched whole pots of never-touched basil die. It’s the nature of gardening. Sadly.
I think I’ll soon be back to slow, ambling gardening again. Probably for the best as I’ll be healing, but I tell you dear reader, I’ll be out in fair weather and harsh, soaking in the sun and breathing in the fresh air. I’ll be relying on the garden to help with my recovery as much as my diet. I’ll also make sure to take plenty of photos, it’s really amazing to see the difference a month or two can make. That’s all for now. You’ll see this post eventually and me with it, so until then, take care, dear reader.