It’s mid-November and I am JUST getting around to publishing this post about summer gardening. What am I doing?! I’ve definitely been telling myself that I could stretch it out until we used up the last of our butternut squash harvest (because summer gardening isn’t over until you use up everything you grew… or something), but I’m really running the risk of sounding tone deaf if I wait much longer. In other words, this post has been a looooong time in the making and it’s about time I shared it with you.
In 2016, we started our first garden. Joey built us two beautiful wooden planter boxes (and I contributed by suggesting they be on wheels and staining the wood) and then, in a mad dash to start growing things sort of late in the season, we bought a bunch of seeds and sprinkled them all over. Each seed looked so teensy that we thought “there’s no way we’re really supposed to place just ONE of these things into the dirt!” We ended up with garden boxes bursting with veggies and by the end of the summer, squash had taken over on one side and chard and taken over on the other.
Not going to lie, it was THRILLING to see all those veggies pop up but they probably would have appreciated a bit more space, so this year, we did it right. We started earlier, we plotted out what and where and when and Garden 2.0 was a smashing success. I mean, our snap peas didn’t do great and we couldn’t get a single strawberry to grow to full ripeness before a squirrel ate it and we only got one pattypan, BUT our basil was beautiful, our tomato plants were alive and thriving and giving us the most incredible tasting tomatoes and we had beets and radishes and chard all summer. Not to mention the legit pumpkin/butternut patch we had.
I cannot even begin to tell you how delightful it was to go into our backyard and grab a handful or parsley or basil for dinner, or fill our colander with cherry tomatoes or radishes to use in a week’s worth of lunch salads or sauté a squash that I had harvested only moments before. These are simple things that brought me the greatest happiness. And just like last year, we’ll end this growing season having learned some new lessons — what we liked growing, what we could do without, how to do better next year — and it all feels so good and essential and life-enhancing.
Oh and we totally grew a little flower garden successfully! It sounds backwards, but I think I’m better with veggies than flowers, so keeping that garden alive all summer was a major accomplishment. AND, after saying we would do it for the past two years, we actually got our act together and planted tulip bulbs for spring! I can’t wait to see them come up (fingers crossed)!
So here’s to you, Garden 2017. We loved you so so much!