Wednesday, May 19, 2010

It's that time of year again...

when Mimi's thoughts turn to blogging. I started this blog about a year ago, and had a great time blogging over the summer, and then fall came, and with it all kinds of new craziness, and the blogging ended. But I'm excited to start it up again, because I'm just bursting at the seams with excitement about my new garden plot! So without further ado...

I am the proud new owner (for this season) of plots # 38 and 47 at the Good Earth Community Garden in Waterloo. Well, when I call it "my" garden, Amin gets mad. Amin is a lovely friend of mine who is going to help me garden this year. He really hit it off with two of the older gardeners when we went there on Sunday evening to get started. He has big plans to make them Iranian tea (Iran is his home country) and shish kebabs. Plot 38 is the one you see in the picture, soil all nice and turned over, with a nice juicy patch of rhubarb in the corner. Amin doesn't know what rhubarb is, and I'm excited to show him how delicious a rhubarb crisp can be!

The soil in this garden is so rich and moist that when I walk in it barefoot, it's like wading through chocolate cake. Seriously. It comes up in rich slices in the spade, fat earthworms wriggling in surprise at being thrust into the daylight. Each spadeful yields four or five earthworms. Some of them are so large that I can't helping recoiling - and I know earthworms are definitely my friends. Amin is not friends with the earthworms, and runs away when I throw them at him. I know, not very mature of me. But really, gardening is just playing in the dirt, how grown up do I have to be about it?

I'm not the only one eager to get into the garden. My seedlings have been biding their time in a grow-op in my loft. (I hung tin foil behind them to reflect the sunlight back at them so they'd grow straight, so it looked really sketchy from the street.) I'm hardening them off in preparation for their planting tomorrow. The peas especially can't wait. Notice in the close up how the tendrils of the sugar peas are strangling the tomato plant in their efforts to get taller. (One of my housemates saw it this morning and said, "Well, maybe the pea plant is just hugging the tomato plant." I'm sorry, but no.) It's a pea-eat-tomato world out there, each seedling for itself! I'm confident that they'll do fine outside. This is the first year that I've tried starting things indoors, and it's been lots of fun. It's just a way to get into gardening earlier. I've got a whole other tray of herbs, peppers, eggplant and squash that still need to be babied along a bit, and then there's a bunch of stuff that we'll plant straight from seed.

Amin and I are thinking of naming our plots "The Gardens of Persia" (look Amin, I said "our"! Are you happy?). We found some trellises that we can use for those overeager snow peas, and Amin wants to plant flowers around the border. It's going to be beautiful!