A City Girl Gardens Week 1: Anything is Possible

This will be my third season gardening, and this time I intend to do it right. I am starting to suspect that gardening has a lot in common with writing a novel. Lofty intentions meet reality right around mid July. And even while you begin enjoying the fruits of your labors, there are weeds that you never did get around to plucking.

I love the precision with which seed packets are written. The Tyee Spinach I just planted indicates that it should be sewn under 1/4 inch of soil, spaced at 1/2 inch apart. Perhaps one of the seeds I scattered now sits under 1/4" of soil, but only by happenstance. It is possible to buy a plastic device which will help you in this endeavor. It costs $1.97, plus shipping. But I'm not a girl who goes by the book. I wing it. (And it often shows.) I do read the book before I fling it aside. So I happen to know that seeds which are meant to be planted under very little soil need to see a little sunlight to start their germination. So I have not sunk these tender spinach seeds to China. 

The peas I started are another story. 1-2" on those. The last two years I have been hoodwinked by pea varieties that swear to not need support. This always proves false, and the peas plants lie snarled on the ground, their little tendrils reaching out, pathetically, for strong arms to hold them.

This year I wised up and planted the peas against the side of the barn. I'm going to trellis them on yarn I'm stringing from nails I pounded in. Yes, that sounds ugly. But the husband has forbidden me to use anymore invisible fishing line in my gardening endeavors. He's tired of detangling it from his mower blades.

Lastly, I've been pruning our copious wild blackberries. Let's say I don't exactly know what I'm doing here, but when the canes stand so tightly together that reaching the ripe fruit is impossible, there is quite a bit of guiltless hacking a girl can stomach. Sweating in my husband's burly man gloves, I snipped and snipped. I now have a giant pile of brambles with an uncertain future, a few scrapes, and a somewhat tidier blackberry patch. As with everything in life, there's surely more to be done.