Tuesday, June 17, 2008

A Not Too Big Garden

We're a few days shy of solstice but I know it's summer because we picked our first ripe tomato yesterday. Dragonstar brought it inside and ceremoniously sliced it in half to share. This took some finesse, since it was a cherry tomato, and a small one at that.

She handed me a tiny wedge. We ate. It was delicious.

Pictured on the right: small plum tomatoes, also just coming into ripe red perfection.

We don't grow a large vegetable garden. It's really just a "pick and eat" kind of garden. A snack garden. Four tomato plants, fifteen snap pea vines, and a small section of lettuces I nurse through warm weather by letting the larger varieties bolt and shade the rest of the plants. That's it. Oh, and all our herbs: culinary ones and magical ones. We grow those, too. And blackberries, but we can hardly take credit for those, since they appeared out of nowhere last year and have graciously returned this year bearing loads of fruit.

Ours is not a very efficient way to garden, and hardly puts us on the path of sustainability. But it gives us pleasure for many months, and it's small enough to not become a chore. Which is Very Important. There is no joy in being overwhelmed by bushels of tomatoes or zucchini, or weeding for an hour in the August heat. Where joy is concerned, scale is everything.

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