We’ve begun our gardening with enthusiasm and we’re barely into May. Our gardeners have been holding off as long as they can, but now the race is on. Planting!! I’ve enticed our gardeners with the promise of a a bright yellow 2 peck (1/2 bushel) basket! The first 10 to have me out to visit their gardens will get one and maybe even a few other goodies! I love this “job” of encouraging gardeners! All it takes is a little encouragement and the good Lord’s sunshine to make our gardens grow. I want to foster the love of gardening in young and old alike. It’s a scientific fact that digging in the soil is therapeutic and who doesn’t need free therapy that reaps rewards down the road! Win/Win any way that you look at it.
We have a few that got things in early to sell at market, so we’re seeing peas, garlic (planted last fall), asparagus, strawberries, and potatoes popping up in Chris Steele’s garden. Chris uses her herbs and garlic in her fabulous breads at the Floyd County Farmers’ Market. Mr. Toad emerges again this year to keep her bugs in check organically. We handed out a nameless bush bean this year that is touted as being stringless and we see it’s tiny head emerging from the soil after just 10 days. It’s looking like a promising year already!
Hilary & John Griffiths, A new couple in our program this year, are building and preparing raised beds at their new home, as well as planting things in 5 gallon buckets. Their plants are looking fantastic and the soil they’re adding to their raised beds was sourced right here in Kentucky! Black gold and smooth as butter! (I think they screened it! Nice move, Folks!) I’m thinking it’s the prettiest soil I’ve seen out there so far! I love how tall their beds are for ease of work. Very pleasing! My back just (wolf) whistles at how comfortable those beds will be as they get older! Happy gardeners will garden forever and I see the Griffiths enjoying their garden for many years ahead.
Glenna Robinson is at it again this year, and she has a big pumpkin patch to match her large garden! She’s in her glory in the garden wearing her beautiful, handmade rose apron. (And I’m loving the sunflower apron she made for me!!) Beautiful lettuce/onion beds, potato bed, and soon to be pumpkin patch!
Glenna’s son, Kenneth, has inherited her green thumb in the garden with a definite Scientific edge to it! He’s the Science teacher at the nearby High School and keeps accurate records on every vegetable that he harvests. Their gardens are similar, yet distinctly different and it’s fun to see the evolution going on in these gardens year after year. Kenneth has started a bean tunnel with branches this year that should be fun to follow and he’s another one of our Market Gardeners!
Pam Combs is a retired teacher in our area and a full time gardener with her husband. They plant a HUGE spread with their kids and grands and are instilling a love for good, fresh food into everyone around them. The grandkids are known to bring Pam plants to add to her garden weekly and love watching them produce veggies while Mr. Chicken (a handsome rooster) stands guard over the garden. He’s been know to drop his wing to the ground and attack a few pairs of muddy boots over his time here. I kept my eyes on Mr. Chicken for good reason!
Marlin & Martha Bolen are long time gardeners that know how to coax the most out of their garden! They are a blessing to our program with their knowledge and willingness to grow new and unusual produce. Peanuts, heritage sweet potatoes, and cotton have been some fun ones to watch grown, while the old standbys of lettuce and onions are also present. Marlin enjoys grafting apple trees and starting peach trees from seed to border his garden. Martha loves to can and is always willing to share a tried and true recipe with others. Cali the kitty hangs out whenever Marlin is in the garden, even if it’s hours!
Below are some other fun photos for your viewing pleasure! As you can see, it’s been a very busy month! Signing off exhausted, yet very happy and content.