Wednesday, August 17, 2005

The plot thickens

Be careful what you wish for. That little adage has been mocking me for the last few weeks, though I am really happy for the turn of events that landed me with a 20x20 community garden plot.

When I secured a 10x10 plot I was thrilled. The bed was prepared, thanks to M. Tomatoes were ready to plant and the scheduled planting was set for Saturday, the 14th of May. Late on the afternoon of Friday the 13th (auspicious, no?) I received a call notifying me that a larger plot had become available. Would I like to claim it? You bet, said I.

A Saturday morning visitation proved to be a bit of a shock. I had signed on for 400 square feet of WEEDS; thick, lush barnyard and quack grasses, runners stretching underground into the next county.

Though a prudent gardener would have spent the entire weekend ridding the space of said runners, my rootbound tomato seedlings dictated the timeline and we chose the weedeater-rototiller path. Thus began the new community garden plot.

I did take enough time to map a bed layout, an enjoyable Excel exercise. Armed with my map, a ball of string and some stakes, and a 25’ tape, I laid out the beds for hand digging and soil amendment.

A summer garden is a wonder to behold. I planted this garden over the span of a couple of weekends in May. Now, a mere twelve weeks later, the tomatoes are pushing six feet, the beans and cucumbers are climbing skyward, and the sunflowers are big smiles atop 8 foot stalks.

Small wonder that gardening is such a popular pastime. Few other pursuits yield such tangible results in such a short time.