Talking to the tomatoes

Yes, I was mesmerized by the chg-chg-chg of the sprinkler.

Yes, it got me.

You’re doing fine, green-plump-tomatoes.  You are worth the wait.  Grow slow, grow well and let me know if there is anything I can do to help you out.  Is the temperature ok?  It’s very hot this week.  Are you getting enough water?  I have tried to be sure no interlopers infringe on your gardener-given space.  For you, my sweets, you are the real reason I go to the garden at all.  Everything else is just to help me pass the time until the day of tomato…

Everything is late this year.  That ridiculously crazy, wintry-spring weather (you haven’t forgotten have you?) where it was warm and dry all winter and then as soon as it should have been spring kept being snow blizzards – in MAY??!?!  Yes, that weather-has caused so much silliness and delay.  It made me fearful, afraid to move forward, afraid to plant at planting time.  Because – what if I lost everything?  What if I planned and worked and bought and seeded and watered and some blizzard outside my control just took it all away?

These are the risks the seed-sower takes, the heartache a gardener might be forced to bear.

My hibiscus are usually flowering by mid-June and are so far just finally fully green and budding.  The Australian Lilies are usually bursting forth the first 2 weeks of June and just one plant has flowered so far.  The rest, though, are about to reach their glory.  They will be at their prime in July.  Late, but beautiful, maybe even more so than expected to make up for the lilacs lost in snow just 6 weeks ago.

I have turned the former pond area, where Snow-in-the-Mountain, Hollyhocks and Russian Sage try every single summer to defy me and run rampant across all borders and any newly-turned soil, into a place for 4 rambling tomatillo plants (left to their own devices, they appreciate 3-4 feet up and all around, as well) and 2 nice, stocky tomato plants.  Eventually, we’ll scape the whole area with perennials and evergreens, but for this year, there is a garden path of grandbebe-crafted stepping stones and I walk through in anticipation, and yes – I do talk to the tomatoes.

I see you.  I have been waiting, waiting all year.  You are proof the Creator of the universe loves me!

The zucchini are fine, thank-you for asking (though a bit battered by the recent hail), however, the spaghetti squash are struggling to make it where last year’s tropical hibiscus flourished, then died over the winter.  What is there causing the havoc?

Everything is a little late this year.  Because you can do what you can do, but there are just some things you cannot control.  I can start seedlings indoors, I can prepare soil, I can dig holes and bury young plants.  I can water and fertilize and pray and hope, but an early-May snowstorm, or a late-June hailstorm can make mincemeat of my flowers and vegetable plants.

All I can do is go pick up fallen leaves, brush away debris, eradicate the weeds that have been roaming to and fro, watching for an opportune time to take over the garden squares, and wait – wait for the hot sun to heal and soothe and give the garden its’ chance to thrive again.

And it will. The harvest will come.

let us not grow weary in doing good

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