It really began when I still lived at home and dad let me have a small section of the backyard for a strawberry patch. I was asking for a horse and I think this was his way of sedating me! I didn't know a thing about gardening but still those red berries thrived. I'm sure I asked advice from my green-thumbed grandmother who grew up in a time when a garden wasn't a fun activity but a necessity. As a kid I remember grandma and grandpa's garden; sunflowers taller than my dad's head, tomatoes red and large, bell peppers ready to be stuffed, even blackberries plump and sweet.
I must have gotten my love of gardening from my grandma. My mom doesn't garden, hum, I'm not sure why, but she doesn't. Maybe this thing skips generations. I am the only one out of four grand kids and two of her own daughters who gardens. I think maybe this world is just too busy and full. Maybe that's why I keep a garden. I have to escape the kids, the house, the hubby, the TV and the computer (no offense) to go out back and water, pull weeds and pluck vegis. It's the best excuse I can come up with.
I sometimes have good luck with my gardens and sometimes not. It is trial (trowel!) and error. I've read the books but still it's up to God and nature what comes up. I love that. Even if I do what all the books say, the garden has a mind of its' own. No 'book learnin' here!! It's up to the Lord to see what happens. I've had plenty of successful gardens, plump berries, red tomatoes, large cucumbers, sweet peppers and bright orange pumpkins. And I've had seasons when my garden just refused to cooperate. Two years in a row I fought little flat beetles on the undersides of my pumpkins. More times than I can count have I had plenty of squash blossoms but nooo squash! Plenty of strawberry flowers but no berries. And for some reason, that's o.k. with me. I take it all in stride and just try again next year.
Ever since I became a mommy gardening had new meaning. I love teaching my girls about the seasons, the seeds, the ways and reasons a garden grows or doesn't. It's really a show of God's promise to provide for us right there in the lettuce and melons. Savannah began by being in her bouncer seat while I watered to now pulling weeds herself. She and my grandma made our resident scarecrow, Mr. Tom. He stands there scaring away nothing, he's just too cute. Savannah always reminds me about our garden every early spring. The moment it's obvious the weather is changing she is upon me, "Mom, are we doing a garden this year?" Yes is always the answer.
Maybe it's time for her to have her own strawberry patch...