Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Extending the Season

If you listen to the local garden pundits, you'll hear that our garden season is greatly delayed. Depending upon who you listen to, this delay could be anywhere from one week to one month. Not that I like to listen to pundits, mind you, but over the years I've noticed that this is sometimes to my detriment (I do have my occasional moments of insight). Well, to my garden's detriment, really (yeah, we don't see you out there shivering in the cold, sheila).

But the thing is, we seeded our plants a while ago. I want that season to get a move on already. I do not want to hang about waiting until it warms up properly. Of course, this forces me to examine how immature I can be my ability to be philosophical about the outdoors as it pertains to my garden. I've never been very good at waiting. Richard jokes that the people who make the Little Miss and Mister books should have made one for me, titled Little Miss Impatient.

Some of us find that incredibly funny.

Some of us don't.

The Waiting Room, awaiting its closeup its eventual deliverance very patiently

Anyhow, the cold frame Waiting Room was getting rather crowded, as you can see, so I sent the pumpkins, mini-gourds, and watermelons off to their new homes one hot sunny day last week. I even went so far as to plant a few of the tomato plants, because they were too big for their pots too. And then my dad comes over and says "#@%, what are you doing planting THOSE now? They're going to FREEZE."

Oh, I thought. Should I tell him about Little Miss Impatient? How I channel a book character? Or will he laugh me into my compost pile?

I decided against it.

"They'll be fine," I said. "They face south. It's hot here."

He looked a little skeptical, but being my dad, he nodded and said I was probably right. And when he left, I felt a little panicky. Say they did shrivel up in the cold night? Say it rained for another 300 days? So I dug around in the garbage pile I have, a pile of old bags from Bag It Yourself soil places, and hauled out a few. Then I got a few tomato cages and fashioned a mini greenhouse.
Like this....
It's funny, in this picture they rather resemble a bunch of old ladies at the beauty parlour, awaiting their wash and set, don't you think? I might just nickname them Mary, Jean, Beatrice, and Alice. The Wash and Set Ladies.
As for the Tigerellas, well, since I only have about, uh, lemme see, maybe 4 million of them right now (why oh why did I plant all the seeds I saved last year? Sometimes I am SUCH an idiot) I figured I'd abandon some in the wilderness to forage on their own do a bit of an experiment with them: will this new Season Extender work better? Or worse? Will they live? Or won't they? Tune in next week for the exciting conclusion to How The Tomato Grows (cue soap opera music). Gosh, the possibilities are thrilling.

Here's the Waiting Room after the Exodus. It's only been 4 days since I took the other WR photo, and already the zucchini (Ronde de Nice) have grown substantially (they are the 3rd row down if you start at the top of the photo). You could barely see them before.
So there you go. You too can ignore Experienced Garden Pundits! Live to garden another day! Channel weird little cartoon characters just for the heck of it! Am I Human? Or am I Gardener?

(guess I shouldn't listen to YouTube music videos while I write, should I?)


Anonymous said...

I planted my peas, broccoli, kale, zucchini on Saturday -- b/c I'm a dreaming optimist! B/c I'm naive! B/c I wanted those peat pots off my counter top b/c the clutter was going to my head.

Last night it snowed. HA! Nature has taught me NOT to deny my pessimistic demeanor.

Sheila, oh sage experienced Homeschooling parent, have you ever been to the Homeschool Conv in Surrey? Is it worth it? If it's not too forward, could you send me an email? Here's my email address.

shaun said...

There are garden pundits? Are we denser? Dancer? Prancer? Vixen?

Your photos *almost* make me want to give into my husband and move to a place where we can have a great big garden.