Wednesday, May 11, 2011

A Gardener's Seed of Faith

My tomatoes have come up en masse!  This warm sunshine has brought both the seeds planted on the 12th and the 20th up. 

Nature knows what it's doing.  It is willing to wait...often unlike myself. Sometimes it takes weeks for a plant to emerge, maybe more than a month.  Still, that tender stem will emerge and those soft first leaves will unfurl, slowly pushing the weight of the soil off to reach for the sun.  

Gardening from seed - I've learned - takes a faithful, trusting heart.  It is much easier to skip the hard part, let someone else be potentially disappointed by a dud seed or marauding ants carrying your seed away.  Each year I garden I become more patient.  The winters are so long here that, come spring, we are famished for fresh anything.  We wait and wait for the first edible fruit of our labor to mature enough to be savored. 

To be directly nourished by my labor is about the sweetest return I can imagine; whether it's milk, eggs, meat, or produce.  It makes me immensely thankful for a strong body and a willingness to try, to learn.

I can tell you that some people have no desire to grow things, and I get that...I just love to eat and cook so it's a natural fit for me!  Our place is the land of seedlings at the moment.  We have seven kinds of potatoes in: French Fingerling, Amisk Ranger, Alpine Russet, Dark Red Norland, Yukon Gold, German Butterball and All Blue.  I am oddly thrilled about taste-testing them this fall, but of course, until I'd tasted anything but the .37/lb store potatoes I wouldn't have known to be excited.  We have bush peas (Sugar Daddy and Amish Snap) in & up all over, carrots (Dragon and Scarlet Nantes), five plantings of all kinds of onions, two different kinds of chard, Chiogga beets (finally coming up a month later!), a few kinds of lettuce, some flowers here an there (tons of sweet peas, hollyhocks and sunflowers are going in this year), and the cold frame has masses of vegetables and herbs sprouting by the day (today our Cheyanne Pumpkin and Jade Blue Corn came up along with more tomatoes).  When we get back from our 5 day trip, I'll be planting many more seeds outside because we should be close enough to frost-free that by the time the seeds germinate it'll be past our last spring frost.  This is a gardeners hope anyways. 

May nature treat your seedlings well this spring...I have read so many reports of farmers having trouble in the "corn belt" and they're saying that it will cause food prices to rise if they are in any way attached to corn products (meat, cereal, soda, etc...pretty much 90% of the store is my guess - woohoo).  Not a bad time to test your faith in a seed.