In a surprising plot twist, the zucchini and the cucumbers are no longer with us. RIP.
But! The peppers pulled through their blight and are now popping out little progeny all over the place.
And the sunflowers are bent on world dominion.
Gardening is such a head-scratcher. This is about the time of year that I want to pull everything up, even the plants that are producing well. You can only blanch and freeze so many green beans, and when you're scared of canning tomatoes because of botulism, well, you run out of ideas for using them all. We are becoming the neighborhood dispensary for tomatoes. (Which, as it turns out, giving away food you've grown is as much fun as eating food you've grown.)
Our little garden grows and grows, through the August dryness and burning sun, and even though I sometimes want to give up on the entire caboodle, mornings find me outside with the hose. Later, before Anna's nap, we sashay to the garden to pull a few weeds or deadhead the petunias. Anna always eats a marigold. (Don't worry - I googled it, and marigolds are only just a wee bit poisonous.) After dinner, Aaron joins our parade out the back door to pick beans and pluck tomatoes. Before returning inside, we stop and stare at our three glorious watermelons. Our watermelon discussion is cyclical; every night we return to the same question. "So, uh, do you think they're ready?"
All those tiny seeds, finger-poked into the ground months ago. Seeds that have turned my yard into a lavish mass of green, polka-dotted with yellow, red, pink, purple. (There were also a fair amount of impulse bedding plant purchases.)
I'm already thinking of bulbs for fall planting. Our new house hasn't one tulip to its name, although Mrs. Smith, the lady who built the house and lived here 50 years, had a special predilection for pink ladies. (Did you know that if you pick your pink ladies and bring them inside, a curious and very pungent mothball smell will fill the air? Live and learn.)
It's been the summer of the garden.
A great summer, indeed.