The cycle continues for so many of us who love to garden and can our produce. We anticipate the spring. We can’t wait to play in the dirt . . to plant the seeds. We watch with great anticipation waiting for those tiny seeds to sprout. The tender shoots are so beautiful . . so full of hope — hope that we’ll soon have a freezer and lots of jars full of home grown produce. We find a perfect little green tomato underneath the blossom. We find one baby pea pod. The tiniest pepper takes form from its bloom. We go after ever weed with a vengeance. We dare a bug to even think of munching on a leaf or stinging our precious produce.
We water in the morning. We sometimes water in the evening. We pray for rain. We are so thankful for the bounty the garden gives to us.
We pick tomatoes. We dip them in boiling water and then submerge them in ice water to remove the skins. We put them in jars and process them in the canner. We shell peas. We snap beans. We scrape potato skins. We freeze. We can. We make pickles.
Then one day, we walk into the garden and we think bad thoughts. We are tired of pulling weeds. We are tired of getting up before daylight to water the garden before the sun scorches the plants, as well as the lady tending the plants. We are tired of the bugs that have found the garden. We are tired of waiting for a rattlesnake to slither beneath the pinto beans. We are tired of standing in the kitchen 12 hours per day . . skinning tomatoes, chopping tomatoes, putting tomatoes in jars, wiping in the rim of those jars, putting them in the canner, trying to keep it right at 10 pounds pressure, waiting for the timer to go off, waiting for the pressure to drop!
If you’re a gardener, you know what I’m talking about, don’t you?
Yesterday I walked into my garden and this same thing happens every year about this time. I said to myself . . if I never see another tomato, I will be happy! I grabbed my basket and I picked all the green tomatoes! There! That should put a damper on the tomato canning!
These will be made into green tomato pickles. When I am done with these, I will rest. I will pack the canner away.
I will plant tomatoes in my fall garden and the cycle will begin anew.