Monday, August 16, 2010

Garden Surprises

I came home from El Salvador to a neatly-trimmed front yard, thanks to Mom. The garden, however, is being its typical unruly self. Every year the same thing happens - I plant in the spring and the tiny seedlings look so far apart that I think they will have plenty of room to spread out. But then the pumpkins and squash go crazy, and this year the tomatoes have joined them. It makes every trip out there like a little treasure hunt - you never quite know what you will find. The Very Large Pumpkin is easy because it is already turning orange (it will soon have to go into the basement, although I don't know how, since I can't carry it). There are two other pumpkins - one in the middle of my tomatillos, and one over by the cantaloupes (these are at opposite ends of the garden, mind you). And there is a white pumpkin out there somewhere. I saw it once. The vines at this point are beginning to poke out of the fence and head into the orchard. Mixed in with the pumpkins are spaghetti squash (I planted yellow ones, but am getting an equal number of yellow and white ones. No one knows why. One of my hippie neighbors suggested mischevious garden fairies, and I know she was being serious) and what I thought were butternut squash. Turns out they are pattypans. My neighbor made a mistake on her labeling. I found out because I lifted a leaf over by the fence and found a yellow pattypan squash the size of a soccer ball, which caused my friend Heather, who was with me at the time, to laugh until she cried (this is my same friend who got me to run the half marathon - see the Sept 14, 2008 blog entry). I may have simultaneously yelled, "What the?" We cut it in half to positively identify it as a squash and laughed at the size. We are still talking about it - wish I had taken a picture of it. Anyway, there's the garden update for now - in between getting everything ready for the start of school, trying to get to the beach a couple more times, and general house/car/animal upkeep, I head out to the garden every couple of days just to see what surprise is waiting for me next!

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