Gardening for Good, 7th night

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Our gathering Thursday night was a nice reunion after having cancelled our gathering last week due to extreme heat. It was still pretty warm out, and I noticed we all seemed pretty comfortable sitting under the tent when it came time to do our garden chores. Mary especially exclaimed that this couldn’t be the same garden she saw a couple of weeks ago, it has grown SO MUCH! Goodness, it really has. The long beans have a stronghold on the sticks and twine set into the trellis, and is climbing to the sky. Feels a bit like Jack and the Beanstalk. Mary and Rick added more twine to create more avenues to the sky. The tomatoes will need to be tamed a bit with some twine, as they are stretching their green arms out like an exuberant opera singer. Andy, JP, Ken, Kay, Laura, Carol, Julie, Angie, Jesse, Ben, Laura, and Nicole provided the necessary attention to watering, pinching, weeding, squishing and twining to help our lovely garden continue to grow in abundance. Terry, Cynthia, and Kristy were recording all of this industry and fun with their cameras for future enjoyment.

WHAT JOY! Doug and Phyllis discovered that it was time to harvest one of their jalapeno peppers. It was luxuriantly green and shiny. Ripe for the picking. They tenderly cut the pepper from its stem, and cut it up to share with all gardeners that cared to try it. It was a nice amount of heat, not too overpowering, and full flavored. With pride, we have watched our garden develop, and now we begin to reap the rewards of efforts.

On a sad note, the Japanese beetles have discovered the incredibly healthy basil that was growing in our tabletop bed. We offered these lovely/destructive luminescent green beetles a one way ride into our containers of soapy water. Marge later suggested we could simply knock them into plain water and then feed the beetles to the chickens. Mutual benefits. True recycling.

We had several furry friends visit with us this evening (in addition to the numerous voles that have prospered at Troy Gardens this year). Marge brought her corgi, Wink; my sister Melanie, brought her cocker spaniel mix, Royal; and my friend, Julie, brought my German shepherd mix, Pete, to our gathering tonight. Their presence was an added bonus of enthusiasm and genuine joy of living.

Our mini-workshop this evening was Our Garden Stories. What a wonderful, wide open, fun, rich, and creative sharing we had. We will be posting some of these stories in additional blogs, but I have to say it is a precious memory to think of our exchange. Andy playing his guitar and leading a round of Kum Ba Ya. Wink the dog howling in reply. Ken sharing how he loved to ride his horse as a young boy. Todd telling of JoJo’s joy in coming to the garden, being around good people and expressing his joy through dancing. Terry’s invitation to look at our garden as if looking through the eyes of our cat. Rick sharing his poetry and showing (and gifting) his drawings of trees, flowers, birds. Julie’s recollection of her first night at the garden planting flowers. Laura/Abaratha has concern about how farmers take care of going to the bathroom and drinking water during their time in the fields. Phyllis’ telling of her memories of her grandmother’s love of her garden, and how she can relate to that feeling having harvested her first pepper tonight. Doug brought a story that he had written on his thoughts from several of his many nights at the gardens. There was an abundance of thoughtful expressions describing the love of gardening and our connection to this beautiful planet.

Gardening for Good is our own Jack and the Beanstalk story. We have planted actual seeds, as well as seeds of good intentions, and we have been blessed with a goose that lays the golden egg of healthy food, good times, and a connection to a community of friends.

Melanie, Julie, Marge, Chris (Jesse’s mom), Andy, JP, Ken, Kay, Carol, Julie, Angie, Jesse, Ben, Laura, Nicole,Todd, JoJo, Doug, Phyllis, Terry, Cynthia, Kristy…everyone at Gardening for Good tonight, thanks for all your lovely contributions.

Once at home, my sister, Melanie, exclaimed at how magical and touching the evening was, and that she was happy to have been here to experience it with all of us.

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