Contain Yourself

It’s Memorial Day weekend, the unofficial start of summer, at least around here. Haven’t had much time for thoughts of summer, really. As I observed to my friend Ailsa, this has been budget season for me  and nearly everything about it has sucked. Global economic downturn, financial meltdown, collapse of the housing and credit bubbles, all of these have come home to roost in the budget I submitted to the town council two months ago. And I hate it.

Despite the budgetary and political frustrations at work I cannot deny that it is the end of May. Even though summer doesn’t “officially” begin until the latter half of June we have to get started quickly in northern New England. Climate change notwithstanding, we still have a fairly short warm season and you have to make the most of it before it’s time to fire up the wood stove again.

A number of years ago this weekend we allowed our ambitions to overcome our senses and we planted a vegetable garden. It was small, no more than seven hundred or eight hundred square feet (that’s 20′ x 35′ or 20′ x 40′ for those of you doing the math), and we got a fair amount out of it, but we have never done it again. In fact, I’ve even stopped mowing around where the garden was for that one year, some eleven or so years ago, as a way of pretending it never happened.  Still, we have wanted to do some amount of gardening, though the thought of tilling, weeding, watering, weeding, tending, weeding, and…. did I mention weeding? has kept us from it.

Today our youngest and I spent some time looking for planters, plants, soil, etc. to try gardening on a smaller scale – our own version of container gardening. Earlier this year she started some green bean seeds and we have a couple of decent plants. In addition, I bought some varied lettuce, radish, and cucumber seeds – most of a garden salad, I suppose –  on a whim last week, and we picked out a couple of nice tomato plants today. We spend part of the afternoon filling containers with peat moss and garden soil, plants or seeds, and watering. Time will tell whether we get any food out of it, but I think we will get something worthwhile regardless.

I’ll keep you posted.