Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Chapter 21 - Digging in the Dirt

    I have always liked to garden.  I love to see the plants take hold and particularly produce great vegetables.  I thought we would be able to get produce really economically.  We stopped in out travels and bought from a roadside vendor and were pleased with the prices.  So pleased that I started to think it would be silly to do the work of having our own garden.  Our trip to the farmer’s market in Poas on Saturday almost changed my mind again.  I bought two leeks. They were 600 Colones or about $1.25  That is nearly as much as they were in Kelowna.  I picked up one beet.  The vendor wanted the equivalent of 80 cents for the one beet.  There was corn on the stand too, but it looked terrible.  It was poorly fertilized and there were great gaps between the kernels.(insert Willy Nelson joke here--Mel.)  No self respecting farmer would try to market corn like that.
   I planted some tomatoes soon after we arrived.  They are still trying to thrive.  They seem to be growing slowly.  I also planted three squash plants, and they are thriving.  I have only a few beets left after the next door dog decided to dig a channel in the flower bed.  I will put in a few more seeds.  The dogs aren’t coming over as frequently as before.  I also have a couple of cucumber plants well up.
    This morning, I decided to do a little gardening.  I took Gigi out with me, she enjoys an outing.  I pulled a lot of weedy grass that was establishing itself.  I pulled some other obvious weeds.  They always grow the fastest.
   There are five rose bushes across the front of the house.  Roses I know.  I have been pruning the blossoms off and bringing them in the house.  They last longer in the kitchen than in the wind outside.  Sometimes it is quite a brisk breeze.  It is mountain terrain around here, with the accompanying changing air pressure and temperature.
   One thing I tried to destroy out at the front was an active ant hill.  This had been built up in just a short time.  It just looked like a small mound of loose dirt, but it had ant characteristics.  I took a long stalk of greenery, folded it in two, and brushed the dirt off the top of the mound.  Ants………Busy as ants can get.  They scurried everywhere.  I took the hose and washed the dirt down to the grass.  I wonder how long it will take for the ants to build it up again.  I will wash it away, and keep drowning it till they give up and go to build their hill somewhere else.
   By this time my nails were dirty, my hands were dirty and my back ached.  I had done a day’s work and it was only 10:30.

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