Gardening for a loser

As I age, the heat bothers me more and more. We actually run the A/C in summer now, not just relying on the fans. And as I have had my third skin cancer removed this week after having 6 keratosis frozen off last month, I have to wear long sleeves, sunscreen, and a big hat to be outside, so not comfortable when it is in the upper 80’s, so the garden is winning, I’m losing. All of my efforts last year prior to the garden season of putting down cardboard, building boxes, and mulching paths hasn’t helped much. The paths are full of grass and prickly weeds, there are two weeds that seem to love the beds and require lots of weeding. It can only be done first thing in the morning or late in the evening and the weeds are winning. The heat has caused the spinach to bolt, the peas to wilt, and the potato foliage is already dying back. All but two spinach plants were harvested last evening and stripped of useable leaves, the last of the stressed sugar snap peas were picked and shelled as shelly peas as the pods were too tough.

The line trimmer needs to be taken to the paths, the comfrey cut back, the potato bed heavily mulched with straw until they can be dug, the tomatoes and peppers hand weeded.

More cucumbers and sunflowers were started late last week and there were nice shoots in starter pots on the deck table. We had a wicked storm last night that required bringing the umbrella in, flipping the glass top table over, so the shoots were placed on the deck floor, in a sheltered place. When trimming this week, I twice spotted a field mouse under the deck and this morning, half of the new shoots are gnawed off.

The back flower garden that was so much effort last year is a weed fest. The flowers are mostly potted as we aren’t finished back there yet, but the soil surface is full of unwanted growth and since the soil layer is thin over weed mat and cardboard, hoeing it doesn’t work. The deeper section below the retaining wall has enough soil to be fairly easy to hand weed.

The deer are feasting on plants they have never bothered before and the hay is still standing. At least the mowers are back home and local grandson got the yard mowed this week with me getting the parts I don’t want him doing by mowing in the evenings.

At this point, instead of enjoying it, I am frustrated with it. Maybe it is time for old lady beds that are at least knee high and set over a substrate material that will actually block out the weeds. I love the stuff growing in half barrels that are easy to reach and maintain, but not a lot can be grown that way. Once we are really getting food from the garden, my feelings will become more positive, but right now, I’m glad we have a great Farmer’s Market and a grandson who enjoys riding the riding mower for a few bucks every now and then.

I would love to hear your comments on this post.