The unofficial start to Summer has begun! All across the United States people are traveling, going on vacation, and getting out of school. Here in the Pacific Northwest, I cherish the months of June, July, and August. Although I continue my 9 - 5 pm, the days are long now and supposedly warm (though that hasn't happened yet here).
I welcomed this start to Summer of sorts by kicking off Memorial Day weekend at my Dad's house. My Sisters were home, which was so much fun! My Aunt Christine was also visiting from the east coast. It was a full house. And what do you suppose we all did with all our time? Sit around on the deck? Well, some of the time. Eat really good food? Well, yeah of course. Garden work? Heck yes!
I'd have to say the highlight was working in the garden and helping my Dad in the yard with the family together. At this point in time, our gardening efforts were akin to trying to control the beast of the yard. We clipped back angry blackberry bushes clinging to every possible niche. We warded off an army of slugs as they left behind their slimy trails. We also battled an ever growing legion of weeds finding their way through every crook and cranny possible. Sound like your yard? We managed to make some good progress on all these fronts, but we also started something new.
My Dad's yard has always displayed of beautiful show of perennial flowers. Roses, iris, rhododendrons, poppies, lilies, trumpeter vines, dahlias and peonies, to name a few, decorate the yard. Just about all of them are still there, but now we are slowly incorporating into the yard an edible landscape. Beauty and practicality unite! My Dad expressed an interest in designing himself a raised bed known as a square foot garden so he can begin to grow his own vegetables. So we helped him build it. He's also planted blueberries, boysenberries, and strawberries to compliment the edibles he already has in his yard like raspberries, herbs, and rhubarb. As the little vegetable starts grow (lettuce, arugula, swiss chard, kale, tomatoes, peas, zucchini, peppers, and beans), we are all cheering them on as we look forward to fresh meals together from produce directly out of the garden.
Back in the days of WWII, just about every home in America had a victory garden, a small space where fruits and vegetables were grown to support the food needs of the household. What a great past time to bring to the present. Can you imagine every household in America setting aside a small space to grow food? Well, at least enough to make a fresh salad every day during the Summer months. It is an exciting prospect. I'll raise a fork and say I can't wait to share a salad with fresh garden greens with my Dad in the coming weeks. I'm proud of him for giving this a go! I saw him sitting outside this weekend on his garden bench with a big smile on his face as he admired his handy work.
Below, take a tour of the garden!