Tuesday, May 13, 2008
I also garden for my boys. To connect to the soil, to know of something that will live and grow and change. To understand through smell, touch, and sight. So as soon as they can grab a handful of soil, they have been in this tiny garden with me. In spring, we dig and clear and plan and plant. We remember what we plant where. We try to remember what grew there last year. What grows well together. What doesn't. In summer we walk each morning, picking bugs, looking for clues, plucking here, feeling soil there. We water, we watch the weather forecast. And then as we go, we begin to harvest. I love seeing little boys in the garden in their PJs with their little bamboo baskets collecting what is ripe that day. It is their garden as much as it is mine, and while it is small, it is carefully tended.
It isn't about memorizing or "learning" about gardening, though. It is about sensing and feeling and experiencing. To see a small child gently rub an herb between two fingers and then smell slowly and deeply to inhale the scent is a wonderful sight. And they remember. Today A smelled one of the herbs, and yelled OREGANO - smells like pizza!
Today we planted many pots of herbs the boys selected. We like to grow as many herbs as we can - and have many planted in ground throughout the yard, but always do pots on our front porch as well since we get such warmth and sun there. The boys helped put soil in the pots, add some worm castings, and slowly ease the herbs out of little pots before placing them in their hole and covering with soil. Today they planted thyme, 3 types of sage, rosemary, marjoram, oregano, dill, fennel, lemon verbena and cilantro. We use herbs all year round from our garden - fresh, dried, flavoring oils or vinegars, in soap, in tea...so good.
So far, we have planted (fruit/veggie/herb):
-corn (mini red for popcorn)
Many things from last year are going strong, such as the blueberries, raspberries, tarragon, lemon balm and several types of mint! Now we just need some decent, regular warm days so that we can get the warmth loving plants in the ground!