Last year my garden was pathetic. It started out strong, rows and rows of different veggies. Of course, my radishes are always successful, they grow like weeds. Maybe it is because they are from the "weeds" family. They kinda taste like weeds according to my kids. My loose leaf lettuce usually grows quick and full. My beans and peas grow at an OK rate of speed and we usually harvest them early because we are excited to eat fresh peas. But, after the first month of garden heaven, our interest in the garden starts to wain. The tomatoes haven't produced yet. The potatoes look like just another weed in the garden. The radishes that I didn't eat, go to seed and the beans and peas have produced their two pea pods and we ate them as soon as they were ready. From then on, all of the vegetables that take a while to produce are forgotten and the weeds begin to take over. We leave for a weekend for one activity or another and I look out the back window and can hardly identify my garden anymore. By late summer my garden is overgrown with weeds and I can't even find any of the plants I had waited so long to harvest. My tomato plant can't breath anymore, my potatoes have been over-run by weeds and have given in to not having any sunlight.
Now, why in the world would I start another garden? I talked to my sister living in Boise and told her about my gardening plight. She recommended a new path. "Have a special family home evening", she advised, "and tell all of the family that you aren't doing the garden alone this year. If you want a garden, everyone will need to help." It was great advise. I had grand visions of each child in the family taking a section of the garden and weeding it, cultivating it, and harvesting a bounteous cornucopia of vegetables for our family's enjoyment. I marched right home from this brief meeting and announced to my family that we will not have a garden this year unless everyone helps out. Everyone looked at me like I was a little crazy and retorted right back with the same enthusiasm. "Ok, we are fine without having a garden". I looked around the room and everyone but Katie was nodding with approval. Katie raised her hand and said, "I'll help you with the garden Dad." So, there you have it. What was I to do?
Well, today was the deciding day. It is Memorial Day weekend. I have some free time on Saturday but it was raining very hard. Everything was wet and the garden plot was muddy. I guess it just wasn't going to happen this year. But, for some reason, I still had this small yearning to plant something and watch it grow. Was it the deeply rooted genes from my ancestors that compel me to be a farmer? Was it the call of a prophet that each family should have a small garden in case of hard times? Was it the thrill of spring when all the world starts turning green? Is it the excitement of seeing something magical happen in a small patch of brown dirt? I don't know, but whatever it was, I succumbed to the pressure and started a garden today.