Vegetable gardening has been a part of my life as far back as I can remember.
I have very early memories of my grandmother's large and neatly organized garden with an extra tall fence built to keep out the deer!
My parents also always had a vegetable garden, which as a child, meant being asked to hoe weeds on hot summer days, and having to help with the seemingly endless harvesting and canning of green beans, beets, corn, peppers and tomatoes.
To top it off, there was also the digging and storing of potatoes, cabbage, squash, and onions for winter.
Now, of course, I am grateful for those experiences. But at the time, it always seemed like rather hot, tedious, boring WORK!
Now my vegetable gardens are usually smaller, and limited to vegetables that will be eaten or shared during the summer months.
I don't usually home can or freeze vegetables anymore, but know that I can do so if needed.
I will also be experimenting with container gardening this season in order to have experience to share with the many who do not have the space to have an "in ground" garden.
I am definitely not a "master gardener," and will focus on simple and easy vegetable gardening.
Two of my grandchildren love gardening, and are often willing to help Grandma in the garden.
My Uncle Jack (who is 86 years old), always has a fabulous vegetable garden, and supplies fresh produce for his large extended family all summer long.
He is what I would call a "master gardener".
We all look forward to his generous gifts of green beans, cucumbers, vine ripened tomatoes, lettuce, peppers, carrots, onions and zucchini.
He keeps Aunt Margaret busy delivering trunks full of fresh produce nearly every day.
I will include tips and gardening advise from him in my newsletter also, and will post "before," "during" and "after" photographs of his vegetable garden in my newsletter as the season progresses.
This reminds me... A word of advise about planting zucchini: Be very careful with this vegetable.
It is dangerously prolific, and can bury you and your neighborhood alive in fresh zucchini if you plant more than one plant.
I have seen the look of near despair on Aunt Margaret's face when she has her trunk full of zucchini for the 6th week in a row, and people are starting to hide when they see her car approaching.
In spite of the few pitfalls, spending time in the vegetable or flower garden brings deep pleasure to many of us.
If you have not yet experienced this, I hope you will take some time to let it happen. It is a good way to slow down, and connect with mother nature.
There is always something to learn, and simple pleasures to be found.
I wish you every joy and success in your gardening adventures.
Have a great garden!