Monday, March 8, 2010

Botany Replacement

The Old Farmer's Almanac Calendar said, the other day, that this is a good time to "gather branches for use as stakes for peas, beans, and other climbers."

This, of course, was to me a signal to watch "Seems Like Old Times" on Encore. This 1980 movie starring Goldie Hawn, Chevy Chase and Charles Grodin, is full of great lines, and one of the best has a flustered (is there any other kind?) Grodin saying to Goldie, who keeps trying to raise corn in their back yard, "We could have gone to Europe for what it took to grow six ears of corn last summer!"

The soil out there where we live in Painan Acres is pretty bad. Old-timers will tell you that our neighborhood used to be a gravel pit, which would indicate that no abundance of flora sprang forth back in the day. In fact, they're still talking about the time a guy across the way was digging a hole to plant a tree, and his shovel hit something white, and he dug and dug and dug and found an entire full-size refrigerator, buried about a foot below ground. (It didn't work, and there was no antique food in there.) So there's no use for us to plant a little garden, what with so many great produce stands right nearby.

Another great advantage of not growing stuff in one's own happy garden is that, come July and August, the non-gardener is not dealing with the issue of how to hand out all the tomatoes, squash, cucumbers, corn, rutabagas and what-all else that spills out of the cornucopia. People in some towns find themselves having lock their car doors at night; if they don't, they will find a couple of the neighbor's Big Boy Tomatoes on the front seat in the morning. Or, worse, summer squash.

Peggy and I have saved enough money to go to Europe several times by just buying our corn at Harold's Produce on Joppa Rd, or from Councilman Bartenfelder's farm stand on Ridge Rd. And yet, we have never been to Europe, so where's the money, huh?

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