If I were a perfect gardener, I would have my garden tilled up at the end of the growing season.
If I were a perfect gardener, I would have tilled the garden AND planted a fall/winter garden.
If I were a perfect gardener, I would have planted shallots. And garlic. And be looking forward to the spring harvest.
If I were a perfect gardener, I would have a green house to get a jump-start on my spring plantings.
But I’ve done none of the above.
And I’ve decided it’s okay. Because I never do any of those things. They are the things that continually get pushed back to the following season’s goals. Currently, my garden is full of brown weeds and plants with very little soil showing. Nevertheless, I have been diligently sprinkling the contents of my chicken house floor over the entire garden throughout the winter. Partly because I have no where else to dump it. Mostly because I like to think I am a semi-perfect gardener mindfully adding the hot fertilizer to my garden during it’s intended dormancy.
Right now the only two things in my garden that I expect to return in spring are strawberries and concord grapes. The grapes were started about 12 years ago when my college botany professor handed out cuttings from his own grapes. The cutting was dormant and I was instructed to take the twig, wrap it in a damp paper towel, cover the paper towel with plastic to ensure the paper towel stays moist and keep it in the refrigerator until spring. Once all danger of frost had passed, I unwrapped the pitiful twig and stuck it into the ground. Soon I had some plump buds on the twig. Much to my delight, they continued to grow and mature and bear fruit. It was sour fruit, but it was fruit. And that’s all it took to get me going.
That spring I started a small garden with tomatoes and green beans. The following year I added lettuce, radishes and corn to my garden. And every year since then, my garden has grown. I’ve learned what I can and can’t grow. This past year, I harvested my first batch of carrots. It only took me 5 years to figure out how to do it! I owe it all to an old Martha Stewart episode that explained the germination period of the carrot. You see, I’m not the kind of gardener to do much research on a gardening matter. If it doesn’t work, I tend to shrug my shoulders and go on. Now that I’ve grown carrots, that mentality has changed.
I may not be the perfect gardener, but I aspire to improve each year. My garden may look less than perfect now, but I have good intentions for the up-coming growing season. I will be starting all new gardens in Bermuda infested soil. Wish me luck!