Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Matt's New Garden

I am assistant gardener at our place.  Matt is head gardener.  That isn't really a disputable fact.  Matt has a gardening obsession that I do not share to a quite equal degree.  He is the one reading seed catalogs in December, for example.  He is the one who always adds some weird new novel plant to the growing repertoire (this year we're trying out fennel).  He is the one who reads Mother Earth News and Zone 4 and Home Hobby Gardener cover to cover.

Don't get me wrong.  I absolutely LOVE gardening.  I love digging into the cool earth with my hands.  I love planting a wee seed and nurturing it into the miracle of a food-giving plant.  Its astounding every single year.  I love harvesting from the garden and putting the harvest into a pan for dinner within minutes.  I love the food savings when you plant and save your own seeds, can and store your own food.  I love the better taste of the produce that comes from the garden and the confidence of knowing it is grown without poisons that harm the web of life of which I am very much a part (that fact is harder to ignore in the garden, too).  I love feeling connected to a simpler time and to the generations before me, back when just about everyone had a garden.  I even love cracking the riddle of what is causing garden damage (rabbits, slugs, grasshoppers) and trying to figure out a way to deal with them (again, without poisoning the neighborhood).  Its a brilliant puzzle.  It is a lot of fun and a lot of work, but it is more than worthwhile.  So, no question about it, I absolutely love gardening.  But, Matt is a man obsessed.  It is a whole different level of love and devotion.

And this year he has a whole new garden to work with that absolutely dwarfs our old garden space.  He is just about beside himself.  There is so much space!  So much space!  He can hardly wait to get at it.

We had another of those mornings yesterday where from the moment he was out of bed until the moment I left for work all he had to talk about was garden plans.  He's so cute when he is so tremendously excited like that.  He's just really dedicated to growing things.   (Have I mentioned he is trying to grow a pineapple?  He heard you could and so....why not?!)

This year the garden mania has gotten so bad that it made Matt late for work.  I thought it was a pretty great story and so I'll share.  He gets a break between shifts at work.  The break varies in length depending on how much work they have to do for the day.  Rather than drive the eight+ miles home and back on break he take a snack and something to read or work on.  Yesterday he became so engrossed that he forgot to go back inside to work.  He failed to notice all his co-workers filing past him and back into the warehouse.  He was sitting in his car busily planning transplant dates and plotting things on his sketch-up of the garden space.  He had no idea he was even late until he caught some motion in his peripheral vision and looked up to see his supervisor, Dominic, standing on the inside of the fence that separates the warehouse lot from the employee parking lot waving his arms at him, flagging him down as it were.  Matt said he had to apologize and felt rather silly about the whole thing.  I thought it was quite amusing.  I mean he was late for work, but he'd actually been there the whole time!  It wasn't like he ran home and got caught in traffic or something.  The really amazing part is that Matt is a quite punctual person, especially when it comes to work and professional engagements.  Dominic wasn't mad, but told Matt they had just grown concerned that something had happened to him when he didn't come back.  I laughed and laughed when he told me.  His transplant list was only part way done too.  "Imagine how late I would have been if they hadn't come looking for me!?"

Well, Dominic was right in a way.  Something has happened to Matt alright.  Its that Gardening Madness again, an especially bad case.  But, not to worry.  Its a seasonal thing.  Happens every year and he always manages to recover.  : )

As I told a friend this week, at least he is obsessed with something that put food on the table.  That makes it more than a-okay with me.

1 comment:

  1. Hooray! Gladdens my heart! Over here in England we have an astonishingly warm spell, and the Badger has just finished making the wooden edging for the raised beds and rot-proofing them. This week my job is to dig over the earth and get all the compost and manure in and ug through ready for seeds to be sown in the next week or two. We are having loads of onions for definite, and trying outdoor tomatoes again, and courgettes, pole beans, broad beans, snow peas, plus this year we have a new big bed for potatoes. Our fruit trees (apple, pear, greengage, cherry) are still small children, but they're growing!

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