Friday, April 24, 2015

Hurry up and grow

It's about this time of year that, if I were in England, I'd be planting peas and tomato seeds and crossing my fingers for a growing season warm and wet enough for stuff to grow, but not so warm and wet that the slugs eat it all. Because that did happen most years.

Anyway, here in LA those planting days are long behind us. We planted early partly just because we can. There was an unseasonable shower a week or so ago, but other than that it's been summer here since March.

We also had to plant early because - sobs and celebrations collide here - we will be leaving the Sugar Cube in August. Since we sowed, so should we reap. And hopefully soon.

Last year we planted early, and then nature swept in with plagues and pestilence. So we planted a second, late set of crops with mixed success. No, that watermelon never did appear in time for Thanksgiving.

Hopefully this year we'll get the chance to enjoy more of the fruits of our labors. The peas are already looking good, though I will need to break my new habit of picking off a pod and eating them with Lady P if we ever want enough to serve for dinner. The chard too has bolstered a few soups and salads already. And our sunflowers, planted in the toxic bed where we committed beetle genocide last summer, are almost as tall as Lady P already.

This weekend we added corn, coriander and zinnias, and talked encouragingly to our tomatoes. We pulled up yards and yards of apple mint roots, making a little room for the new stuff to grow. I think the next people to live here will thank us for that: it was taking over the whole bed in a creepily effective way.
 Fingers crossed thanks to our efforts we can enjoy a bountiful harvest before we move. And if the next Sugar Cube residents benefit too, so much the better.

One thing's for sure: we will miss this yard, and afternoons spent getting our hands dirty, clearing weeds, planting seeds and in Lady P's case, moving small amounts of sandy earth around with mysterious, but serious, purpose.

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