Gardening Ups and Downs

| 7/6/2015 3:01:00 PM

Tags: Gardening, Gardening Struggles, Apple Trees, Biennial Apple Trees, Tracy Houpt,

Tracy HouptI’m not having a great gardening season. We had too much rain in June, and our clay soil was waterlogged for most of the month. Also during June I had two bouts with an illness that was not serious, but completely sapped my energy and made it a challenge to get through the regular daily chores. I had no extra “oomph” for the hard work of weeding. With every day of rain that caused the weeds to thrive, I got more discouraged and just couldn’t drum up the motivation to even begin!

Then the Cavalry showed up this past week, in the form of my son Kyle and his girlfriend Wendy. They brought a much-needed dose of youthful energy and enthusiasm with them. They spent a couple of hours working in the rows of tomatoes and peppers, freeing them from the surrounding tangle of lamb’s quarters and other weeds.

Amazingly, there are fruits forming on the plants, so all is not lost.

I hope to get out there this week and tackle the rows of bush beans and cooking beans, as well as the carrot and beet areas. If I end up with some tomatoes, peppers, beans, squash, and cucumbers, I will need to be satisfied.

Years like this make me thankful that I’m not completely dependent upon what I can grow in my own backyard. Striving to be more food self-sufficient is a worthy goal, but I doubt that I’ll ever be a completely closed system out here!

We are fortunate to have a growing farmers’ market in our town, and there are a few Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) groups in this area, as well. The organic produce sections of our local grocery stores are growing, and the prices are competitive. I try to purchase organic foods as much as possible, for our health as well as to show the store owners that organics will sell.

mother earth news fair 2018 schedule


Next: April 28-29, 2018
Asheville, NC

Sit in on dozens of practical workshops from the leading authorities on modern homesteading, animal husbandry, gardening, real food and more!