Monday, July 11, 2011

High Plains gardening is a waiting game

Ogallala strawberries (mine kind of look like these)
Something to say about picking fresh Ogallala and Quinalt strawberries in the garden, combining them with a handful of fresh mint, and passing this around to your guests.

Hand-picked dessert.

Washed down with an Old Belgium Ranger IPA. A Belgian White like White Rascal, the one made by Avery of Boulder, might be better -- maybe even a red wine. But I don't know my wines like I know my beers.

The garden grows well. Tomatoes appearing on the vine and they'll be ripening eventually. Lettuce and rocket and spinach galore. Wait for the rest. That's what high-plains gardeners do a lot of -- waiting.

I'm a gardener in training, spending every summer learning more about what grows best. I'm also nurturing my soil with lots of compost -- can't have too much of that. Soon my soil will be comparable to those in the more hospitable growing climes, places like eastern Iowa and Missouri. I'll live so long...

The rains have been a Godsend but my garden needs a bit more hot days to really produce. That's what we lack -- long, hot days for the tomatoes and beans and squash. I wither under that kind of heat but mid-summer garden veggies thrive.

Now if we can just keep the hail at bay...

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