Sarah Rosemary at Sunny Side Up and DailyAngst were hosting Reverb11, a series of prompts on 2011.
Prompt for December 29: Home: How do you make your house a Home in 2011? Did you move? Repaint? Redecorate? How do you want to change your home in 2012?
We have lived in this house a good portion of The Child’s life, so it is effectively a home to us already. My contributions these days come in the garden.
- The Child and The Corn
A few years back we had a priest in our parish who was EXTREMELY into growing food to help feed the homeless. He moved in to the rectory and immediate reallocated space around the church and started a vegetable garden.
One spring, during Mass, he asked the congregation to consider taking home these little bags of seed corn and planting them where we could. He asked that we bring a portion of whatever grew back to church for the program that feeds the homeless.
Darth Vader has nothing on my black thumb and I certainly don’t know nothin’ ’bout growin’ no corn. I tried anyway. I planted the corn in 3 sections of the back yard. In one section, it spouted quickly but did not grow tall. In another section, it didn’t grow at all. In the third section, it took a while to sprout, but it grew and it grew tall and it grew quickly.
I never understood why people prayed over their crops until I had the helpless feeling of waiting for them to do ANYTHING! So everyday, I watered and I watched. I watched and I watered. When green shoots popped, we celebrated (a little) and when it became obvious that certain sections of the garden were not going to grow or that they would only grow so much, we accepted and focused on what we had. I know, it sounds silly for a New York-born, Las Vegas raised MBA-Chemist to fret over a few stalks of corn, especially when there are so many other challenges in this modern world, but I did. And when the time came to pull the ears of corn and cook them up, I must tell you, they were the highlight of the meal.
It’s been a few years, but the priest’s message about the abundance and we have in California and the unused capacity we have to grow and to feed ourselves has been churning in my head.
- The Orange Tree
When we moved in to our home, a mature dwarf orange tree was growing in the back yard.
In 2010, I flanked the orange tree with a dwarf pair and and apple tree. The peach tree blossomed this last spring and bore fruit. It is probably few weeks away from budding. The apple tree still needs time to mature.
Labor Day weekend this year, I planted a pear tree in the back yard and an avocado tree in the front yard. The pear tree took with no signs of trouble, but the avocado tree was touch and go. First there were problems related to underwatering. Then there were problems with overwatering. Large leaves turned brown and fell off within weeks, but new buds started growing immediately. Talk about mixed messages.
In the past few weeks, I have planted bare root bing cherry tree and a bear root multi-graft (Bartlett, Red Bartlett, Anjou) pear tree. These trees came with no leaves, which makes it very difficult to tell how they are doing. All I can do is keep do is water and watch. Both trees seem to be developing buds over the past days, but it could just be my imagination. Now I worry that these trees will get enough chill hours at night to induce them to sprout (who knew they needed cold).
My morning and after work routine typically involves visiting all 7 trees to check on them. Their like little mute children that don’t give a hint how they are doing. The best I can do is just pay attention and be aware of how moist the soil is.
As 2012 rolls around, there is a new hole in the back yard dug in preparation for a multi-graft apple tree. There is also land eyed up in both the front and back yard for at more trees. There is a lot of unused capacity in my yard. I just had to be made aware of it and then be willing to try to grow things.
The next owner of this house better like fruit.