Discovering Summer Again

In the early summer of my 73rd year I am suddenly aware that my body does not manage heat as well as I remember from years past. Here in the northeastern corner of Alabama the drought coupled with very high humidity and temperatures in the upper 90’s have driven me indoors in the middle of the day.

Yesterday morning I was digging a trench to bury 2″ drain line for my grey water system and after only about 20′ of trench I had to go in the house to cool down despite working in the shade of the porch. It took far too long to recover. I am searching for the silver lining in this but the search must go on…

Some better news is the harvest of blueberries, strawberries, and goose berries from our gardens. Despite this, I have decided that I am kidding myself each spring when I get the urge to prepare the garden area. For a week or two I cultivate, weed, mulch and plant with the expectation that I will care for this garden and produce lots of peppers, tomatoes, onions, kale, eggplant, asparagus, and herbs. Every year my faithful gardening ends within two to four weeks. Gardening begins to be an obligation rather than a joy.

I am resigned to supporting the local farmer’s markets in order to enjoy fresh locally grown food and stock my freezer. I admire serious gardeners but apparently I will have to do so from outside the circle of master gardeners. – I may stick with composting, that seems to hold lasting appeal for me.

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