Monday, May 29, 2006

Gardening At Night

The city of Bloomington has a community garden project. They have two pieces of land that they have plotted out for local residence to garden in. One is a more elaborate plot in which communities can rent out each year, the other a little less glamorous, yet free chunk of earth located in the middle of a city park.

Having missed any opportunity to garden over the last year and a half, Amy and I signed up for a free plot. Unfortunately we have been too busy to get out there over the last several weeks and so the ground that was nicely plowed for us became overgrown with weeds.

We were a little embarrassed going out there last week seeing our weedy rectangular plot sitting next to all of these finely tuned vegetable gardens. A local not-for-profit business has taken over the majority of the plots so that they might bring home grown vegetables for the poor. They have a large number of volunteers all who can spare time to come out each day and make their gardens looks wonderful.

So there me and Amy were, next to these beautiful gardens, sitting in a plot of tall grass and well established weeds. The hippy girls with underarm hair were all very kind to us, and were very excited to see our plot being used.

Several hours and a lot of sweat later and we had hand pulled and raked nearly all of the major weeds. As the sun set, we packed it up and headed out for the day.

It was a few more days before we were able to make it back to the garden spot. What we thought was a lot of progress previously, now looked like a whole lot of work still until we could actually plant. We toiled until well past sunset, with large street lights guiding our way through the moonless night.

The plot looked about as good as we expected to get it and we planted some nice tomato and pepper plants.

This morning we headed out again, blocking off our plot with string, making nice squares in which to plan our garden. We planted squash, onions and carrots before we ran out of seeds. Amy bought some garlic, beans and herbs today and we hope to get back out tomorrow evening.

I anticipate many more hours of sweating, weeding, and toil before our hard work sees harvest. Yet it brings me a great deal of joy to look at a well sewn garden, knowing how good those vegetables will taste having come from my own hand.


bigsip said...

Ah, but remember...Those veggies are from God.

Pray that your garden will grow. Pray for rain and sun at the right times.

I come from a multi-generational farming family. You have good years and bad years.

Hopefully, this will be a good year for y'all!

Sounds like y'all have an awesome start!

mullinz8 said...


I've yet to have a chance to transplant my little matters and peppers out of the planter they are sharing with a wisteria. They all need a new home.

I love trying to grow stuff each year. Someday I might have more than five sq feet to grow my rag-tag garden.

Brewster said...

I'm not sure I'll be praying for my vegetables. I don't need them to earn a living and I certainly won't die of malnourishment if I don't eat them. Seems like God has better things to do than take care of my hobby.

I really just like the act of gardening. It's dirty, hot and often back breaking work, but its extremely satisfying to see it grow.

And truth be told, I'd rather plant flowers. One day I'll own a house and a nice yard in which I can plant both.

I've seen what you grow Mullins. Make sure the cops don't look.

Jamison said...

Is that project anything like dr katz did to get to know a scandinavian lady doing the same thing?

Hey, ill never forget seeing corn growing on Mullins' 3 x 3 plot of dirt behind his house.. i know he grew corn just to one up his neighbor, whom he tends to compete with, who grows tomatoes...

bigsip said...

Your choice not to pray, Brew.

All I'm saying is that God gives the increase. You can work on it all you want, but if you don't include God in it, watch out.

It may just be a hobby, but God's hand is in the growing things. Just never assume that you are making the plants grow. Your hard work is inconsequential if not for God giving you that ability and making the rain and sun come at the right times. We actually play a very small part in our gardens.

I hope it grows well. I'll keep you and your garden in my prayers.

Brewster said...

I'm not trying to leave god out of my garden. Certainly Gods hand gives the increase. I thank God for the opportunity of gardening. I'll praise god if they grow and yield a beautiful harvest.

But why would I pray a special prayer for God to help out my little tomato plants when they aren't necessary for my welfare?

With all the other things going in the world, why would I spend my time praying over my little hobby?

bigsip said...

The much larger garden my Dad plants every year gets many prayers from those of us who benefit from it.

Certainly, we can all buy the food we need to survive at any grocery store.

However, the blessings from the Earth God made and which we tend, are special.

There's a partnership there that is lacking in so much of our lives today. There's something spiritual and important about the act of partnering with God toward a good end, even if it is a hobby.

Either way, it's a blessing from God and an opportunity to make something good. If it bears good fruit, you can share it with family, friends, coworkers, people at church, etc.

Other people appreciate that kind f thing very much and might be more likely to see the kindness and goodwiwll of you as a Christian as a result.

We have been blessed with many good crops and were able to help people with the increase God gave. Some need it and to some it just brings happiness. Either way, they appreciate it and see it as God blessed.

My philosophy on growing things and God's work in it runs deep. He is the Master of creation. We tend His world and he blesses us accordingly!