The plot thickens

I have been dreaming of tomatoes, of how to feed the properly, and when to water. I planted four this year: one cherry, and three slicers. Their names are Sungold, Ethiopian Prince, Gold Medal, and Italian Heirloom. They have suffered a little early blight, and my expectations remain low. The Costato Romanesco zucchini, with ribbed green skin, is producing well. The leaves are enormous, mini umbrellas, and the fruit literally seems to double in size overnight.

What can you do with a foot long zucchini? Four banana breads? Forty-eight muffins? And what about the two already in the fridge?

And the kale? Forests of green ruffles, getting bigger the more I pick.

Thank goodness I only planted one cucumber plant, although it too has surpassed its trellis. Not seeing much fruit though.

I call the vegetables fruit because they are the gift of the leaves. Nomenclature. Borage ought to be a verb, so gigantic does it get. The marigolds remain scrawny, but the sweet peas prolific. An hour in the garden, hand-watering, pulling weeds, and harvesting, and I am exhausted.

Next year I will try spinach. Less kale. Maybe beans. Garlic. Leeks.

A Plot at Last!

Only not the one I have been thinking of most of my life. The plot I yearned after, that proved most often elusive, was a fictinal plot, a very Freytag triangular twist, a linear circulular thing with turns, ending at the only possible place at last. That plot still eludes me.

I speak of the garden plot. After years of being on the fence about the commitment, then on a waiting list, I am renting a community garden plot in town. It is an eight foot by twelve foot rectangle, fence almost securely, with a broken gate I remedied with bungee cord.

It took several days to weed, by working diligently with stirrup hoe and other implements.

Indira Ganesan, Weeded Plot, 2022

I’ve inherited a jaunty sun ornament I affixed to the gate, and a few stakes. I pilfered some bits of thrown out lumber, to create very uneven boxes, and added bagged compost, plus community loam. I started with cosmos, sweet peas, and marigolds, and then put in eight dahlias that had arrived as two inch tall root cuttings, which I nourished into foot tall plants for months at my studio windows.

Sadly, the dahlias contracted yellow mosaic virus, and had to be pulled out and thrown away. Luckily, a friend gave me kale and cantaloupe starts, so they went in instead. A plant sale at a fairground, plus various garden centers yielded eggplant, zucchini, cucumber, borage, and more kale. I ordered four kinds of tomatoes, and planted more marigolds, basil, landcress, and nasturtiums. Fellow plotters gave me butternut squash and calendula.

Indira Ganesan, Mostly Planted Plot, 2022.

My expectations are low, and I must remember to water. Hopefully, it will thicken, this plot.