We had another flash thunderstorm last night with high winds. My greenhouse tipped over again. I had moved it to a more sheltered spot, facing the house, but apparently that wasn’t enough. Three broken pots and several once-again-upturned plants later, I’ve finally gotten the message that this thing isn’t for use in this type of climate in the summer. It’s warm enough that I don’t need it anyway. I’ll put the extra pots on the porch steps and put the greenhouse away until fall, when the thunderstorms stop and it’s cool enough to make a difference and I’m no longer depressed when looking at it.

So let’s talk about something else. Let’s talk about how long that bag of spinach has lasted in my fridge. It’s been a week, and it’s still firm and sweet and whole (if lighter–I used some for pizza and salads). I had feared that it would quickly turn slimy and dark, the way bagged spinach does when you leave it in the fridge for a few days. I wonder how long that spinach sits in the bag before it gets to Kroger or Costco.

Let’s talk about my lettuce. I’m growing so much lettuce. We don’t eat that much salad and we don’t have much of anyone to give it away to. Why did I grow so much? At least it’s pretty–especially the Lolla Rossa and the Freckles–and it makes my garden look lush. As I improve as a gardener I’m sure…fairly sure…that I will learn to apportion my garden space more appropriately for what we actually want to eat, not just what’s easy and pretty to grow.

Let’s talk about my unwillingness to do things in the garden other than plant, weed, and water. And even that last one is sporadic. My mother-in-law wanted to know why I wouldn’t buy soaker hoses. I told her they were expensive, and when she didn’t like that, that I don’t like them. Which I don’t; it would be inconvenient to put them in the vegetable garden at least, and they’re so slow, and I’d have to remember to turn them on, and then off several hours later. And I really like the idea of letting the plants build character, so to speak, by making them fend for themselves unless things get really bad.

I know gardening is by definition a disruption of nature, but I vaguely feel that if a plant can’t hack it out in the yard with the natural sun and rain and wind (greenhouses notwithstanding) and even bugs, maybe I shouldn’t be growing it. And though I know I would improve my plants and my yields by, say, fertilizing, or trimming, or paying more attention to support (or weeding), or doing something about the damn ants and aphids, I’m curiously indifferent. Maybe I would be more active if I were truly gardening for my life. Maybe I’m hopelessly lazy. I like my laissez-faire approach to gardening. But do the plants?

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