It all moves so agonizingly slow, the tomato wait. I should be happy that I have most of the garden in at this point, but I can’t see past tomato planting time. The temperatures flirt with 80° for a few days and then laugh and run back into the 40s for a few weeks.
Meanwhile, the plants that mean the most to me, the homegrown tomatoes, sit under the lights and grow taller, a little lankier every day. Four or five weeks is perfect for them. The problem is guessing when the weather will cooperate more than a month before it happens. The problem is that now mine are pushing 7 weeks old. What was I thinking?
They’ll end up fine. They almost always do. But you can’t blame a guy for wanting to plant the stocky, bushy four week old plants rather than the teenaged six week olds.
Warm days ahead. But then in a week, two more upper 40s nights. To keep my hands busy, I dug some holes. Filled them with compost, worm castings, a few coffee grounds, a little peat to hold water in this sandy loam, a dash of Epsom salts and some eggshells. Now I have to make the decision whether to let the plants get a week taller or risk the weather.
As the garden comes to life, so does the hardware. The beans have popped, which means they’re at they perfect stage to be mowed off by fat groundhogs. I’ve learned that if you put aesthetics aside early, you have something left to please your senses and your stomach later.
So it’s time to drag out the bean thing. Remember that we had chickens so long ago that I cant tell you when that was? Well, I kept two of the walls of the old chicken pen, which has become my repurposed bean cage. A twenty-something year old investment is still paying off. It ain’t that pretty, but I ain’t that proud.