Saturday, June 06, 2009


SULLEN TOMATOES


After another unseasonably chilly night my garden isn't at all surprised this morning at the blanket of clouds or the lack of a bright, warm orb in the sky. By now the young vegetables have some experience; they don't trust the weather. And I don't blame them. It has been like this for the past many weeks - uncharacteristically chilly, I mean, with a lot of clouds and fog and little sun. Even vegetables can run out of patience.

Normally I'm on reasonably good terms with tomatoes, in fact I get along well with produce in general, but these days in my garden I'm beginning to feel like a high school teacher. I'm not used to sullen tomatoes, grouchy garlic, slouchy onions. They're all healthy and vigorous, naturally ready to do their thing, but they're being restrained by some intransigent authority, like kids in high school: they can run the hundred meters in 10 seconds but they have to walk quietly; they could boogie all night but hey have to stay in and do homework. That's the look on my tomatoes. They want to let loose, let it all hang out, sky's the limit, but they're grounded by an ultraconservative sun. You should see the expression on my garlic.

Such is my current gardening lot in this weird weather, with almost no warm sunny days since that one we had last ... summer, I think it was. It's been chilly and cloudy, mostly March-like ever since March, and the vegetables, like myself, are puzzled-- insoucient, even. "Whatever happened to global warming?" imply my couchy potatoes. It's like a class full of grumpy teenagers out there. If it's not monkeys it's the weather. Coming up the road last night, about a couple hundred meters below my house I could feel my autothermal-layer gauge suddenly change from CSC (Comfortable Spring Chill) to SSS (Shivery Shades of Siberia).

To live on a mountainside is to invite edgy weather, but rows and rows of moody vegetables is another matter. I tell them it's out of my hands, but they don't want to hear it. I remember being like that myself when I was their age.

3 comments:

ldeg said...

We moved to West Virginia, my home state, last fall, and are almost at the top of a hill (not a mountain - they're farther east). We have deer, not monkeys, and our first-year garden is less ambitious - we are mainly at the beating back the brush and cleaning up the trash stage. But we have had the same gloomy weather - it's 56 and foggy at the moment - nearly 3 hours after sunrise (or so we hear, as it's not visible yet) and our few vegetables seem a bit discouraged.

Casey said...

'If it's not monkeys it's the weather.' -- a metaphor for life, no? A great line if nothing else... enjoying your blog.

Kay Dennison said...

My problem is too much shade and haven't found anything that grows
-- yet. Oh well. You have my sympathy. I love my trees but I'd like a bit of color.