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Time to Garden

April 30, 2012

Cake from my GardenI can barely move. I just spent the afternoon embarking on my latest adventure in gardening. Today, I dug holes and planted some beautiful species to liven up my front yard. But, if history is my guide, the $400 worth of interesting foliage, appealing color, etc., will wither in about 2-3 months. And I just wish and wish that I had inherited my grandmother’s vivid green thumb.

My mother’s mother was an extraordinary gardener. She made use of every bit of her tiny garden. She tended wildly prolific raspberry bushes and an abundant peach tree. She deftly turned her harvest into jams and pies. She grew tomatoes, which she didn’t eat since they gave her hives, but I think she gave those to neighbors for fun. She also grew rhubarb, which she gave to my other grandmother who lived 8 blocks away. And she loved her silver dollars that she dried into bouquets alongside bunches of lavender on a clothes lines in her basement.

Her approach to gardening seemed, to me, casual, but passionate. She kept a dedicated set of shelves with violets in her family room that she grew out of cuttings from other plants. She looked forward to preserving her fruit, and would send us back home with a labeled jar of peach jam sealed with wax. She is probably the only reason I enthusiastically harvest the pears from our pear tree, and take the time to peel, roast and puree them each year. The other reason is the Roasted Pear Cake with Chocolate frosting I make from time to time, pictured above.

So now, I am lying down, recovering from planting a golden flame something or other that I had to pay someone to pick out for me. If I remember to water my new plants, it will be a step in the right direction.

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