Tuesday, August 2, 2011

The Summer Doldrums

The heat and the weeds and the continual work begin to wear on a body along about July. July, to my mind, might be the hardest month to maintain one's gardening edge and enthusiasm.

“Back in the day” we generally began to see the garden slow down as the calendar headed toward August. The tomatoes were still cranking out, but a lot of other crops were finished. By the time fall rolled around, the garden could be tucked in for the winter, and we could see the fruits of our harvest in the rows of full canning jars on the storage shelves.

That all changed when we began growing for market. We need to have products until THANKSGIVING. That means…no giving up in July!

Seeds are continually started, plants are still planted out; there are chickens to process, eggs to gather, and lambs to haul. And, then there are the constant battles with the weeds and bugs. Nope, no summer vacation around here.

Last week, it seemed a little much.

We were too hot, and it made us grumpy. It was too dry, and it made us grumpy. All in all, we were just really grumpy. There seemed no solution for the situation, except to muddle through. So, we did.

Then, it happened.

Nothing could have prepared us for the lift we got from the arrival of the Johnny’s catalog.

There it was, in all its glory waiting in the mailbox. The cover boasted information about “extending your season” and “increasing your revenue”. There were new seed varieties and toys, I mean tools, to consider.

So, this afternoon, I’ll place a little order for some items we somehow overlooked in our fall planning. A few fall experiments should keep things interesting.

Now that July is ended, we got some more much needed rain, AND we are looking forward to our fall/winter crops, the doldrums are lifting. Our enthusiasm for our work is beginning to return.

Whew! Made it through another July.

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