I like to think that I have saved the best for last, and no, it isn’t my garden. My mother’s garden has always been large, and even now, when we are all living in our own homes and there is just my mom and step-dad at the house, she still plants enough for all of us. We continue to reap the benefits of our mother’s garden.
I can remember growing up we always had a garden, usually quite big. Over the years it has moved locations a few times, but most of the same vegetables have been grown.
This year there is cucumbers, potatoes, colrabi, chard, beans, tomatoes, corn, wild flowers, herbs, zucchini, carrots and onions all growing in abundance. (If I missed any I’m sure my Mom will let me know 🙂 )
While Mom does some canning and preserving most of the produce in her garden is used immediately. We are always welcome to go and pick through the vegetables to add to our table or to put in our freezers. Neighbors are invited to share the produce and some is given away, whatever is not used for family and friends is given to the pigs to supplement their diet, nothing is wasted.
Throughout the years growing up we were always expected to help out in the garden, most times we did so reluctantly, not appreciating the lessons learned. I remember when we were teenagers and Mom would leave us a list of chores to do by the time she came home from work. If I remember correctly Mom came home around 3:30 pm, and from 3:00 pm until then we did a mad dash to get everything done 🙂 which usually included weeding a row in the garden.
Recently, my parents have been growing a green cover crop on half of their garden space, they turn it over every other year and plant with vegetables, giving the other half a rest and putting nutrients back into the ground.
I can say now that I do appreciate the work we did as kids in the garden. Growing up with an abundance of fresh vegetables that we were always told to go and eat is something that I am thankful for and something I hope to provide for our children.
Did you grow up in a garden?