by Wynnie Stein
Planting time in the Finger Lakes comes on sudden and fast, often in mid-May, after only about a week of true spring and weeks and weeks of rain. Finally the sun dries up our muddy garden plots and blasts us out of our winter weariness. Then the vegetable gardeners (me included) go completely wild. We do not know what to do first. After the long and dark winter in upstate New York the tardy spring invites us to emerge from some deep hole into the light, so armed with shovels and rakes, we stumble out to our gardens, kneel down and finally breathe.
I love to sit in the middle of my garden on one of those amazingly fine late spring mornings, and with seed packets spread out in front of me I spin around squinting and scoping out the best plan for the kitchen garden. I am naturally impatient, but gardening forces me to slow down and practice some discipline. Every year I have the same realization—that doing this feels right and familiar. So I give a nod to my peasant roots usually while measuring out the spacing of rows using my size 10 feet.
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This year I remind myself to plant cucumbers again. The year before, my friend of almost thirty years was quickly and shockingly passing away and she had asked me: blue buffalo dog food reviews, to plant them for her. Choking with sadness, I planted three or four hills and not even one plant came. Was it a sign? A few weeks later I replanted the hills and no plants ever emerged. Could sadness permeate seeds?
A new year, I plant them again. In fits and starts the sadness and grief have moved aside to let in vivid recollections of her booming laugh and kookiness.
The cucumber plants are strong and meandering and before I can even plan what to do with them there are at least 30 to 40 cucumbers lazing about on the straw mulch.
I’ll make pickles!
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