The hope of sunshine is definitely gone and along with it hopes for an Indian Summer. The garden is swimming in weeds, blackened leaves and soggy, leggy stems lying down to die. Thoughts of mounds of sweet, ripe and red tomatoes are replaced with hints of happiness as I discover red in the Stupice plant. I pick and I cherish each bite. Jay picked the languishing Delicata squash to dry out and hopefully "winter over" in the cool garage. The carrots are strong and protected under the ground with their tops green and lacey ready for a pull. Beautiful reddish yellow Dayton apples polka dot a tree. Raspberries are small and ready to burst. The yellow jackets are finding hiding places in the berries making the picker wary of the sting factor.
Green beans are there, but are few and far between. They are so well hidden, but I am an avid seeker of those tasty healthful beans. The corn has tasseled and seems to be maturing. Time will tell if we ever bite into an ear.
You have to be a gleaner to be a gardener. You have to enjoy seeking and finding and then following through with husking or snapping, boiling or freezing. Sometimes I think you have to be just a little crazy to go through all the work and depend on sunshine to make it all work. But then you have to wonder: what else brings so many good things to your life. The work, the art, the research, the weeding and the psychology of sticking with it are all good things as Martha would say.
The grand-kids will be here next weekend. I am praying for some sunny days when they can enjoy picking some produce with grandpa and I. I want them to have the memories and witness the benefits and the hope that goes with each seed or plant that goes into the ground. They already love the fresh fruit and vegetables. Their parents have cultivated a strong appetite for good food. And for that I am thankful.
If you are reading this and you have the opposite problem, God Bless You. If the garden is hard to keep watered because it is so hot outside: enjoy it. All we can say is: "rain, rain, go away and beg that rain to come some other day...preferably in late November.