Friday, October 14, 2016

My garden (again, with the tomatoes!)

Since my yard is currently all-over mud and snow and slush and dead stuff, I decided to go back a few months and relive the sunny warm weather and reminisce about my vegetable garden. The comboxes have been filled with queries about "where I grew all those tomatoes," and so I'm going to answer Daria in a new blog post. 

This is where I grew them. We live in a very small town (population like 70-something), in a fairly large yard (it's a triple lot: the house sits on two lots, and the garden occupies the third lot, east of our house. The dwelling you see in the background is my neighbour across the back alley.)

This was my garden in early July, before things got out of hand. 

Left to Right: 2 rows potatoes, 1 row onions, 2 rows peas, 2 rows beans (one bush bean, one pole bean--they are beside the wrought-iron rail), 1 row carrots. The tomato plants are on the far right. Though you can't see it, they are, at this point, confined to their cages (which were meant to 'support' the plants, a quaint notion to which, if tomato plants could talk, they would have responded, "Bwahahahaha").  

A few weeks later: the peas are finished (hence the empty patch), and the pole beans have swallowed the railing. To the right, the tomatoes are starting to rebel and take over the east side of the garden. (There is a cucumber plant lying low to the left of the tomatoes, but eventually it disappeared.)
Can you spot the tomato cages? Neither can I. The plants became monstrous. They rose up out of the soil, crushed and swallowed the cages, and then proceeded to spread across the garden. Imagine putting a corset of pipe cleaners on a baby boa constrictor, and hoping it would confine him in some way. That was the story of my tomato cages. 

What began as two neat rows of 15 plants became a tangled tomatoey jungle. 

Close-up evidence of a cage on my Roma tomatoes. The plants were so huge and bore so many tomatoes, that the formerly upright cage was wrenched and twisted, and left at a 45-degree angle by the plant. 

Although I'm happy we can grow so many vegetables, my true gardening enjoyment comes from the flowers. Here are a few snaps, with more to come another day.


  1. Very impressive! How do you keep it all weeded? I planted 2 tomatoes and two zucchini and by August they were overwhelmed with weeds.

    1. You keep it weeded by spending hours and hours and hours and hours bending, kneeling, squatting, digging, pulling, tearing, hoeing and severing, and occasionally making your kids join you (they help tend the veg garden; I concentrate mainly on the flowers). Hubby uses chemicals in some areas of the yard, but I get testy when he gets too close to my flower beds. And yes, sometimes my beds get overwhelmed with weeds. The yard and garden are a full-time job in the summer. However, I justify it because: 1)"free" fresh food; 2) the work is extremely therapeutic; 3) it gives me joy, and 4) it gives me lots of time for meditation/prayer and inspiration for writing.

    2. Oh, and as Lizzy Bennett or Charlotte Lucas might observe, gardening is very beneficial exercise.