The days are warming up in San Jose, CA and the dirt is producing voluminous quantities of grass, weeds, suckers and shoots. Also pushing out of the tended ground in my backyard are flower seeds.
This is a new thing to give over more of the gardening energy to growing annuals and perennials. On beyond tomatoes. Of course, I have two heritage tomatoes, which are fuzzy, cute looking little things like puppies right now, sitting demurely in the bottom of their big metal cages. Like puppies, these varieties, a Mortgage Lifter and a Brandymaster Pink, will grow into enormous dogs, huge mutts dropping tomatoes everywhere.
But flowers. Cultivated. One sign of order and art in my house is when I make a flower arrangement. The care it shows and the life it brings to a space, whether the kitchen table, the dining or the living room, is a nice touch. So, this year, since I have the gray water system, I thought I’d try varieties of cut flowers, most of which are not so drought tolerant.
To think it all comes from the dirt. And the temperature. When the dirt is still cool, the lemon cucumber seeds will not sprout. But the red chard is growing by inches daily. With the temperatures expected to be in the low 80’s for the rest of this week, I can expect more seedlings to appear, along with the usual weeds and unwanted grass.
Some people don’t dig the dirt. But I find it very therapeutic to tend garden spaces and watch. Yes, the best part of gardening may not be the hand to hand combat with the clumps of grass that got started during winter rains. The best part may be sitting here at my writing desk, tipping my chin up a bit to peer over the windowsill to see the well manicured round, raised bed that is the main garden in my backyard.