Pensées

Thoughts on the Meaning of Life…..by Todd Helmkamp

Green Thumb, Black Thumb

Posted by Vogeler on February 4, 2008

My mother has a Black Thumb.  She can’t even keep a cactus alive (and you really have to try to kill a cactus.  She forgets to water them, even though they sit on the window sill right above where she does dishes every day).

I don’t exactly have a Green Thumb, but I can at least keep a cactus alive.  So this year, I want to try my hand at a little bit of gardening.  Nothing crazy, but maybe some green beans, melons, pumpkins, peas, I don’t know.  Some fruit trees would be nice too (although not technically gardening.  Is it called “orcharding”?).

I know that growing plants is a lot of work.  If you skip it for even a few days, weeds can take over.  I have been informed by The Wife that this is my project, and she will be doing no weeding whatsoever (although she is excited about fresh green beans.  Sigh.).  My dad is probably laughing right now, as he remembers all of my complaints about forced labor and torture as I weeded in the garden at the house where I grew up.

So, knowing little about growing things beside the facts that you have to water them, weed them, and keep rabbits and such from eating them, I will set out into the unknown realms of vegetable gardening.

There are a few reasons I want to do this:

1.  It sounds fun.

2.  Hopefully, we will save some money at the grocery store.

3.  By using only organic, heirloom seeds, I can control what our family eats (no GMOs, thank you very much!!)

4.  I want to spend more time outside, in contact with God’s creation (even my small-town bit of it).

So, Dear Readers, I place before you an offer and a plea:

The offer:  if any of you want to go together to buy seeds, that would be great.  My understanding from my research so far is that one packet of seeds is usually way too much for one person.

The plea:  please give me any advice you have!  And if you want, stop by and help me weed.  Especially if we get one of those nasty, green-and-yellow garden spiders.  *shudder*

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8 Responses to “Green Thumb, Black Thumb”

  1. Bethany said

    weeding isn’t that bad. i could handle helping once in awhile. the fact is that i will be busy taking care of a new baby and weeding will, more than likely, be the last thing i will want to do. a nap would be much more beneficial. i’m sure that you could teach our 3 year old how to weed a garden fairly quickly. father son time. 🙂

  2. Emily said

    Hi Todd, I’m going to probably be expanding my garden this year, so I’d be interested in splitting some seeds and/or plants.

    I know I’ll want to plant the following:
    Tomatoes
    Cucumbers
    Zuccini/Squash
    Lettuce
    Bell Peppers

    Let me know what you’re thinking and maybe we can do some splitsies…

  3. Sweet! I’m down for everything but tomatoes (ick!), and I’m also considering green beans!

  4. Emily said

    Oh for crying out loud! What is it with you boys and tomatoes? They are delicious and oh so good for you!!! I’m cool with green beans too.

  5. nathan said

    in addition to lettuce (like Romaine or Red Leaf or something like that–or both), we would also be interested in a Mesclun mix.

    yummy.

    Looking forward to the veggies.
    Not so much looking forward to all the work!

  6. I’m down with mesclun, too! I’m also considering some fruit trees. Any advice?

  7. nathan said

    Yeah…typically fruit trees must cross-pollinate. Depending on the fruit, sometimes there are male-female varieties, other times one type of fruit has to cross-pollinate with a different variety of the same fruit. Others self-pollinate.
    Just be sure you read up what kind you’re buying so you can be sure you buy the right kinds! It also takes several years…

    Also, a dwarf is nice, because it stays low to the ground–maybe 8′ high at the most?

    They are also a lot of work to keep insects off of…and if you are planning to go insecticide free, you’ll likely be eating the occasional worm (at least half a worm, anyway!)

  8. SICK!! Thanks for the advice, man. I actually laughed out loud when I read that!

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