Thursday, August 20, 2009

Gardening Rules?

I was talking to a friend a few months ago and we were talking about bolting cilantro. Mine always bolts of course. I didn't realize you could plant it every few weeks and use it all summer. I just always lamented not having it when I was to make salsa. Here I was talking about how cilantro doesn't grow well in the heat supposedly because well... it bolts. And she said something that stuck out to me. She said "I don't know anything about gardening rules. And I'm certainly not going to follow them."

I'm such a reader about things. Read read read. I may or may not actually DO them but I've read loads about everything. Loads of information packed up there but not nearly as much doing as I'd like. And a lot of times it's because this thing I read said it was too late, or that I don't have what I need, etc.

So Fall and Winter gardening is coming. And here I keep looking and reading things that say I should have started x, y, and z weeks ago, some many week ago. And I'm bummed. I keep asking myself whether it's even worth it to start things that the internet and books say I missed the window to plant. The real question is... is it worth it to TRY? Sometimes frosts are late right? If I cover with plastic it gives me a zone and a half bump *maybe* right?

Ack I'm such a rigid dork. I hate it too. Part of the whole gardening process is getting dirty, digging in, trying new things, failing at many of them, enjoying the successes. Tell me I can start cabbage now and it'll grow through the cold. That if I start broccoli it won't all die. That carrots aren't a lost cause. Radishes? Lettuce? Should I start it inside? Outside now though it's hot? Both? How much importance should I give to gardening "rules"? Obviously throwing out ALL wisdom from those who have had their hands in the dirt for years and years isn't wise. But to let it paralyze me isn't either right?

I surely can't be the only one that just totally geeks out when they look at empty gardens. I know over the years I'll get over it but looking even at the row and a half I've prepped and composted I'm geeking out and I have a couple more rows to prep and plant.

Kim the geek. Off to sleep so tomorrow I can can tomatoes, make Phelan's cucumber ketchup, pull out all this year's seeds and get ready for planting this weekend!


janny77 said...

very useful tips to care for our gardens


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knottymama said...

Followed you over here from the comment you posted on Crunchy Chicken (forced background checks for IVF). I absolutely agreed with you and just had to check out your site. I cracked up at this post because I get all freaky about those same gardening things. All I can tell you is that I planted kale in late April and it is still producing even through the Oklahoma summer heat - but I can't keep the darned bugs from eating it up. I didn't plant my cucumbers until late May because I didn't decide until then that I wanted to try cukes this year - now I'm making pickles. I think I've decided that all those rule-writers just don't know what they're talking about! Best of luck. I enjoyed reading your blog and will be back often!