Friday, March 21, 2014

Tomatoes Were My Gateway Drug

It started with a single "color bowl" - a cheap plastic pot from the local big box store stuffed with petunias and lobelia on my apartment balcony.  I watered the pot diligently and it made me feel happy, cheered even when the annual flowers faded.


The craving grew though.  My first rental house offered a single raised bed, high above the rows of hydrangeas and camellias. Sure, my first tomato plant occupied that bed right along with some Iceland poppies and sunflowers. But the fruit it produced . . .

That was the gateway.  The beginning.  There was no turning back.

As the years went by, I added more tomatoes.  Basil and cilantro. Then pumpkins.  Peppers, peas, summer squash soon followed.  I became a full blown veggie gardener and it didn't matter where I went.  Tomato cages cluttered apartment balconies in search of sun.  Ornamental beds at rentals were cleared for carrots and lettuce.  From home to home, my vegetable garden followed me.


When we finally bought a home, I poked bareroot sticks in the ground, planning orchards and berry patches.  I hauled home citrus trees and built more raised beds, conscripting broken branches and feed containers once the redwood beds overflowed.

 Soon after, I planted a few flowers - as "companion plants" for the vegetables. Nasturtium here, calendula there, and borage over in the corner.  Before I knew it, I was putting together bee gardens, joining the local native plant society and filling my greenhouse with butterfly larval plants - because baby butterflies - or caterpillars - need to eat.

Gardening occupies my mind at all hours of the day.  I wake wondering whether how long sun hits the patch along the fence and go to sleep debating whether I should add that new Asian pear tree - the one resistant to fire blight.  My bookshelves are littered with gardening guides, my Pinterest boards brimming with pretty pictures and clever ideas. I'll admit it.

My name is Green Bean and I am an addict.

And you can be too.

Whatever you do this spring, do me a favor.  Grow something!


This post is part of Oregon Cottage's Tuesday Garden Party and Homestead Barn Hop.  Check it out for more gardening fanatics.

3 comments:

Betsy (Eco-novice) said...

Love this.

Alexis, Baron von Harlot said...

Gorgeous ... foxgloves?

It sounds like you probably should plant the Asian pear tree.

Green Bean said...

@Betsy: Thank you!

@Alexis: I did plant it. I just couldn't stop myself ...

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