My family has always had a garden.
Growing up out in the country in Kansas, surrounded by farmland, it was just a part of life. Even when my grandparents moved their family into town my grandpa plowed up a large rectangle in the back corner of the yard so my grandma could have her big garden… right next to the clothesline.
Then, when my parents got married and moved three miles out of town on the land they bought from his mom and dad, they naturally planted a big garden just outside what would become my bedroom window.
I have fond (and not so fond) memories of gardening as a kid. I remember running in and out of the sheets blowing in the breeze while my grandma bent over her lush tomato plants. I remember hours and hours of harvesting the endless rows of peas. And the sweltering heat among the corn rows.
So it is only right that now, as a wife, mother and stay at home mom, I try my hand at a family tradition.
In Taiwan, I tried mint. It died. Twice.
I enjoyed tending to our landlady’s out of control flower beds in Thailand, but I’m not sure if I helped or hurt.
Thankfully, the papaya, dragonfruit, rambutan and passionfruit in our yard were pretty well established by the time we got there! MMmm…
Here in America, though, in our little apartment, there’s not a whole lot of space. But, thanks to the internet and a few good ebooks, we are starting our first container garden! Last time they were here, my parents gifted most of the seeds, plants, starter soil… and labor! It was pretty funny, actually. They did all the work while I sat on my computer and told them which seeds to put where.
But now I’m on my own and am feeling somewhat successful… save for a few wimpy looking cucumber sprouts and some pesky gnats fluttering around my strawberry plants.
Last week when I was frantically cleaning everything in sight, I began sweeping the deck. And when I twisted that unsightly spider web around the end of my broom I immediately regretted it.
I guess I’ve lived too long with spiders being pests and have yet to appreciate them for their fine gnat catching abilities. I’ll learn, someday!