I have been gardening for nearly 35 years and along the way have learned a whole lot about growing your own food. This year, Sandi and I invested in a 20 foot by 36 foot cold frame/greenhouse in order to extend our mountain growing season and also keep the deer away from our tomatoes, beans and peppers.
Talk about a learning curve. First of all it took nearly two months to complete the structure and then get the plants in the ground in time to get a harvest this year. Then, as the days grew longer and got hotter, we found that just dropping the sides early in the morning did not keep the temperature in the 85 to 90 degree safe growing range. So we installed a 50% shade cloth along the top which seemed to keep the temp down most of the time except when it was 80 outside with no appreciable breeze.
Anyway, the crops inside are looking good even though we burnt a few buds during the week or two before we installed the shade cloth.
My wife says that I have kept up with the gardening tasks really well this year although when It came time to harvest the onions and garlic, I was doubtful this was an accurate representation.
What I mean by this is the fact that even though I had weeded several times during the early stages of garlic and onion growth, it seems that overnight these fertile beds are covered with the most pernicious weeds imaginable.
So it is not just a matter of forking up the garlic and onions but the beds must be weeded at the same in order to ready them for fall planting. And like I have said before, you really need to be in the weeding mood in order for this process to take place.
As I gave myself over to this altered state of consciousness of playing in the warm soil, I couldn’t help but think of the bible verse that talks about weeds, which in this particular illustration are called “tares”.
One has to wonder where all these weed seeds come from. It seems that no matter how well you weed one year, there are even more the next year. Maybe this verse explains where these weeds came from. I certainly know that gardeners don’t order them online and plant them along with the good seeds.
Matthew 13:24-30 New American Standard Bible (NASB)
Tares among Wheat
24 Jesus presented another parable to them, saying, “The kingdom of heaven [a]may be compared to a man who sowed good seed in his field. 25 But while his men were sleeping, his enemy came and sowed [b]tares among the wheat, and went away. 26 But when the [c]wheat sprouted and bore grain, then the tares became evident also. 27 The slaves of the landowner came and said to him, ‘Sir, did you not sow good seed in your field? [d]How then does it have tares?’ 28 And he said to them, ‘An [e]enemy has done this!’ The slaves *said to him, ‘Do you want us, then, to go and gather them up?’ 29 But he *said, ‘No; for while you are gathering up the tares, you may uproot the wheat with them. 30 Allow both to grow together until the harvest; and in the time of the harvest I will say to the reapers, “First gather up the tares and bind them in bundles to burn them up; but gather the wheat into my barn.”’”
Maybe this is a stretch but perhaps someday the weeds will be gone and the earth will produce only what the good seed intends.
Enjoy your ride and your gardening.