29 October, 2008

Requiem for a Tomato...or Three

It's so sad. It's waking up to wind gusts of 25 kph (18 mph), looking out your kitchen window as you pour the morning coffee, and seeing three green strings thrashing, loose and wild, when they ought to be tight and sure and holding up your small tomato crop. It's such a peculiar sadness.

I've never had my own vegetable patch before, even though my weekends growing up often involved indentured servitude on my step-family's lot. I had no real emotional investment in any of that work as I didn't really benefit from it. But this is our food. Our nourishment for summer salads and autumn sauces.

Isn't it strange how attached we get to our little plants? How we beg them to grow, curse them when they yellow, and cheer when a new blossom or leaf sprouts? It's a bit like having dozens of little green children that you really just hope will succeed in life and give something back that's worthwhile.

We bandage the wounds, we feed and nurture, we try to protect them from the world, but sometimes all our efforts are in vain and we just have to accept that Mother Nature and Fate will win out.

Good luck, little plants. Hang in there. These winds can't last forever.


RazorFamilyFarms.com said...

Your poor babies! I, too, love my plants and love tending to them because I know that they will feed my family.

I am so glad that you were finally able to escape servitude and carve out a happy life for yourself.

I am not too young to remember your long hours or how you were treated. My only wish is that I could have done something to stop it all from happening.


Kelly the City Mouse said...

We think the full death-toll is at three, though the one that snapped off entirely left only a small seedling-sized plant behind. We'll see if that one survives or raises the tally to four.

It was a crap life, that's for sure. Ah well.

Margo said...

Don't despair - last year in november we had a killer frost and I thought our plants were done for - but 80% came back and gae us lots of tomatoes!

Do you have any spare bits of shadecloth? It makes a great windbreak

Kelly the City Mouse said...

We're trying to keep up spirits!

No shadecloth in the scrapheap right now, but what an excellent idea!

I did re-inforce the remaining tomatoes with bamboo stakes, and I think next season will find the tomatoes closer to the fenceline.

Lessons learned!

RazorFamilyFarms.com said...

Hey Sis!

I had an idea -- could you carve a watermelon since pumpkins are scarce? Are they available in Australia this time of year?

I've seen carved watermelons and they are GORGEOUS!


Kelly the City Mouse said...

Good idea about the watermelon. Maybe next year if we can't find something more traditional.