Visiting my mother two days ago I was impressed by the squash plants in her garden. Some of the leaves on these things are about the size of a dinner plate and the tendrils make fascinating corkscrew shapes. I snapped a few shots and thought today would be a good day to share them! I adjusted the brightness a little on the computer but the software's not real exact so oh well. Still, I love the shapes!
It amazes me how the tendrils find holds and grip them determinedly. In another spot the vines were pulling the fence down.
A few years ago I had a great garden. My parents showed up and tilled, we planted everything in one day, and I spent the next week or so mulching and then weeding and mulching. Sounds like a walk in the park, right? I had a garden to rival my garden-obsessed neighbor's and all was well. We had tomatoes, corn, and green beans galore. I even had a row of beets that were an amazing success. But this garden had a secret.
Under all that mulching and weeding and general garden harassment were grass roots. Every time we put a garden in we battle these roots. When we first moved in and put in the garden I didn't worry nearly as much about the grass coming up as the ragweed. Before I knew it I had hay growing where my veggies and flowers should have been. My neighbor looked it over with deep gloomy satisfaction. "Quack grass" he pronounced in sepulchral tones and the battle was on.
This year I knew what to do and I was more than ready after the endless white and grey of the snowdrifts. Till the garden, cull roots from the soil without mercy, and mulch everything ankle-deep. I had the newspaper and the clippings. I was loaded for bear. We put the garden in using child labor to pull out two big piles of grass roots (the garden had been fallow for a couple years while I was pregnant and nursing) and the next morning I went out with the baby in the stroller and began mulching before anyone else was up and it could get too hot out.
I managed to get two rows done and the rest of the family came out and whined that they wanted breakfast. The baby put in her two cents and agreed, besides the heat was already cranking up so I quit the field and returned to the kitchen.
There was a heat wave interspersed by drenching rain storms. I didn't make it back out to the garden.
This is just sad. Believe it or not there are garden plants in there. Here are some marigolds in the part of the garden that I actually mulched. The grass ate the mulch.
There are corn and tomatoes and flowers but what I've had most success with is...grass.
Next year...the mulch returns!