Eating from the Garden — Part 2

I have a friend who has said more than once that it drives her crazy to her people talking about how fast time is flying by, and who posts messages on Facebook every time it gets to the end of the year, asking the question about where did the time go.

Well…I’m one of those people, and I don’t mind admitting it. Because honestly, the passage of time seems to speed up with every year I get a little older. My mom used to say it would; even though, to the best of our knowledge, the earth isn’t really spinning any faster today than it did five, 10, 20 or 30 years ago. But yet, I feel much more flabbergasted to flip the pages of another month and not remember a whole lot about what just happened in the month I’m leaving.

Perhaps too it’s because as we get older, we’re moving closer to death, so everything is more urgent! Okay, okay, that’s not the direction I’m headed here. I’ll save that for another “time” in another blog.

But last week most of the schools in the area I live in started back — some as early as August 1. Yes, that means some poor elementary, middle, junior and high school students were sitting in a classroom the first week of August trying to pretend they were paying attention to even the shell-shocked (I would imagine) teachers standing in the front introducing themselves while trying to learn the names of the new class of students they’ll be hanging out with for the next nine months; all while their cousins, friends, and online gaming partners in other states are still enjoying that family vacation at the beach, movies in the middle of the day, or just sleeping in. Another school year has begun in Tennessee; and the passage of time moves on. I’m sure many of them would join me in saying, “What happened to summer?”

Well, the same can be said about the garden. It’s hard to imagine, but the summer crops are done. Most avid gardeners and local farmers have already pulled up their old crops, tilled and amended the soil, and are planting new seeds and plants for the Fall harvest. One gardener told me she’s already behind because she didn’t have her fall crop out by the end of July!

Planning is important for the best results — deciding what you want to grow, where you’re going to plant, watering, weeding, and feeding today — yields food ready to harvest and eat tomorrow. Not enough people think about “tomorrow.” While it’s certainly okay to live in the moment for some things, those who don’t plan for the future are often left struggling with their future when they get there.

The Garden can teach us a lot about life. Perhaps that’s why God used so many gardening terms as examples for living. One thing we learn is that you can’t just throw your seeds anywhere and expect a good crop to come up. Take the time to come up with a plan for what you’re going to do with your life. Another thing we learn is that you have to tend to your garden or weeds will come up and choke out your work. As it applies here, you need to take care of yourself and all whom you are responsible for. Doing what’s best for us (and for our families) takes a little time and a lot of work; but if done with consistency, it’s worth the time and effort. And of course, what’s become a famous, perhaps overused, but nonetheless true cliche: “you reap what you sow!” If you want a good harvest, then plant a good crop.

Don’t wait until you need something to realize you don’t have it. Start a savings account now. If you have a savings, add an IRA or 401K. Study now for another career track; or do some research now on how you can turn that hobby of yours into an income-producing job. In the literal sense, go till a small section of your yard and create a garden. You’ll be amazed at how much money you’ll be saving while eating the freshest foods from your own backyard (which may save you in doctor’s visits later). And with a few recipes and some freezer space and canning ideas, you can catch those raindrops today to use to water your garden during the next drought.

Turnips, Collards, Spinach, Butternut squash, Acorn squash — are ready now to plant in most zones, and will be ready to pick by September. And don’t forget to plant those pumpkins right now to be ready in time for your autumn time decorations!

From the Farmer’s Almanac:

What is Planting by the Moon?

Planting by the Moon is a great way to help plan your above and below ground crops.

  • Plant flowers and vegetables that bear crops above ground during the light, or waxing, of the Moon: from the day the Moon is new to the day it is full.
  • Plant flowering bulbs and vegetables that bear crops below ground during the dark, or waning, of the Moon: from the day after it is full to the day before it is new again.

New Living Translation
“Lazy people want much but get little, but those who work hard will prosper.”

 

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