Friday Fun – Pumpkin Harvest
Last year’s garden attempt was abysmal. We moved mid-June, which was really too late to put in a good garden, but I wanted one in the worst way. We planted seeds and plants and then it poured for about a week. Many of the seeds washed away and plants were drowning.
We had a tough summer with my family. Both my mother and father were sick. We spent a lot of time visiting hospitals and rehab facilities. My father died. There wasn’t any time to take care of the garden. Any plants that did grow were choked out by weeds. Animals came and ate away anything that was good. I would despair looking at the garden every day. Eventually the garden became a symbol for my loss that summer and the emptiness I felt.
This year I was determined to recuperate. We planted things at the right time. Spouse put up fencing (2 times!) to keep the animals away. I weeded regularly. And we had a great garden with more food than we could eat ourselves. Life was full and rich again.
But the most surprising of all were the pumpkins. Because I did not take care of them one bit!
In the beginning of spring, one of our neighbors stopped by and gave us seeds from a giant pumpkin. He thought they would be fun for the kids. He also gave us an idea – throw them in the old manure pile in the woods, he told us. If you get a big pumpkin, I’ll bring my backhoe in and get it out for you.
So we did. And we also tossed in some regular pumpkin and squash seeds. We didn’t do anything for that patch all summer. Occasionally we would walk down and take stock – we could see some things growing, but mostly the vines were just running amuck through the woods. Then all of the sudden we discovered we had a giant pumpkin and 4 other pumpkins coming along.
At the same time, an errant pumpkin plant popped up next to our patio and took off. We figure the seeds from an old jack-o-lantern sprouted there.
Last weekend we went out to hunt pumpkins. We plunged into the woods and fell into holes, got beaten up by thorn bushes and came out with 11 really big pumpkins! Our stray pumpkin plant gave us 5 more. Without me tending to them, those plants grew and gave us 16 pumpkins.
Is this a life lesson to me? Do I need to learn to let things go sometimes? Do I need to stop worrying and fussing about life because it is going to take its natural course no matter what? That the real trick is to figure out what you can let go of and what you need to work on?
Or maybe the pumpkins are just lucky pumpkins.
In any case, they will soon be jack-o-lanterns and we will start the cycle again next spring.