This is, ironically, the hardest time of year for me as a gardener: high summer. Partly because it's just so freaking hot here in eastern Colorado, but also because all there is to do is weed. And fertilize. And clean up after the chickens and heavy rains. No planting (though soon I will put in fall crops like broccoli and kale and parsnip). No planning (besides thinking about all the strawberry plants I want to add next year...). Very little harvesting as we are between the cool and warm season harvest - we still have lots of lettuce and a few carrots, but mostly it's wait for the baby pumpkins and tomatoes to ripen.
The heat makes me whiny.
This year my garden is doing far better than the last two years. I used a ton of compost to amend the soil last spring, I fertilized my plants with organic veggie fertilizer (I've been something of a fertilizer snob in the past, wanting compost to be enough, but in my leached soil it just isn't), and we've had a lot more rain. So I really have nothing to complain about. I'm just impatient for action. And cooler temperatures.
Interestingly, about the time of the harvest, I'll be harvesting a pretty sacred fruit from another of my gardens, my family: My baby is due September 15th. So again the veggie garden and the life garden align: we enter the horse latitudes, the dog days of summer, ripening, waiting, and dreaming of cool sweetness with the fruits of my patience and love.
I wish you peace and lemonade this summer, dear reader! I'd love to hear how you are spending your long summer days in the gardens of your life.
Sunday, July 12, 2009
Summer Heat in the Garden
Written by Clea Danaan
Clea Danaan grew up in the Pacific Northwest; she now lives in Colorado. she is the author of five books relating to nature-centered spirituality and natural family living. She writes about nature mysticism, chickens, homeschooling, permaculture, and more. Her books have been published in more than six countries and translated into several languages, including French and German.