It’s Quiet. Too Quiet.

Okay, we realize we’ve been really lax IPB Living bloggers this summer (regular readers of IPB proper shouldn’t be surprised about this), but it’s not our fault. This has been the boringest summer of gardening ever. Here’s what our daily routine as gentlewoman farmers has been like:

1. Wake up.
2. Notice it’s raining.
3. Realize this means we don’t have to water the garden for a few more days.
4. Realize this means we can’t take the camera out in the garden because it’s raining and we don’t want to break the camera (again).
5. Realize it’s actually raining really hard, and it’s too wet out to even want to just walk out and look at the garden without a camera in tow.
6. Read up on Late Blight.
7. Worry about Late Blight.
8. Are those spots on the tomatoes, the ones we can see from the front door where we’re huddled out of the rain, Late Blight?
9. Worry.
10. Read more about Late Blight.
11. Decide those spots aren’t Late Blight.
12. Find something less annoying to think about than the garden.
13. Go to sleep.

That’s been our day, every day, this entire summer. We’ve been lucky in that we’re having a bumper crop of tomatoes in this Summer of the Blight (anyone who’s reading this and thinking about starting a garden next Spring, take our advice: grow from seed), and we’ve had wildly successful onion, garlic, potato, and especially pepper crops this year. Our carrots and beets washed away in a torrential, hours-long downpour that ripped through Maple Hoo the day after we planted them. Our beans are chugging along. And we almost never have to spend any time actually interacting with any of them because there’s been so freakin’ much rain this year. It’s a self-tending garden. On the one hand, that leaves us lots of time to pursue our other hobbies. On the other hand, this must be a lot like what it’s like for parents when their children go off to college. We love the garden, we want to be involved in its life, but it just doesn’t need us anymore.

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4 Comments

Filed under 8. August, Garden

4 responses to “It’s Quiet. Too Quiet.

  1. Douglas

    Congratulations on your tomatoes this year. Good for you. Our tomato crop has been extremely disappointing. We guess the blight got them. We’ve had a great year, gardening-wise, in other respects — terrific collard greens from the get-go, and excellent swiss chard, lettuce, beets and kale. (Is it possible not to have success with swiss chard?) But since in terms of space, tomatoes are our biggest crop, we are disappointed.

  2. Yeah, it’s been SUCH a bummer here in the Northeast, hasn’t it? Summer’s supposed to be all about the tomatoes! We’ve been lucky with our farm share, too, because they managed to keep their crops free of it for the most part, but I have friends who are members at other farms who are getting zero tomatoes this year. I think what worked out for us in our garden is that we started from seed and also provided all of our neighbors with seedlings. So no one in the area was getting infected plants from the big box nurseries.

    Congrats on a great Swiss chard season, though! To answer your question, apparently the farmers at our CSA found a way to have no success with it. We’ve gotten barely any, because it all got washed away. And I’m really jealous of your beets! The beets in our garden floated away in all the rain. If our respective gardens could join forces, they’d be unstoppable! :D

  3. Ironically, its my from seed plants that were blasted to hell by the blight. My heirloom plums lost some leaves, but only 3 tomatoes so far. My beefsteak only has 3-4 tomatoes left. Either way, I need to find a good seed company for next year. I want them to all be heirlooms. =D

  4. Aww, that’s terrible, Chaz! You should blame your neighbors, then. We think the other reason we’ve been lucky with the blight is that no one else in our neighborhood was growing tomatoes that they didn’t get from us. And then we’re surrounded by some pretty vast swaths of woodlands and corn fields, so we’ve been pretty insulated. Not that the cold, damp weather hasn’t led to other tomato problems, but nothing that seems obviously blight-y.

    (As for seed companies, I’d recommend Seed Savers Exchange and Seeds of Change. That’s where we get all of our seeds!)

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