Monday, March 19, 2007

vegetable garden

At the beginning, the lettuce bed is so overrun with grass that everything has to be taken out and new seeds planted. The second generation of lettuce seedlings, planted clumsily on top of one another, do very well.

Some beetroot seeds are planted in the south-eastern corner of the lettuce bed. Beetroot plants look like spinach with blood in their veins. Underground vegetables take very long to reach harvestable size.

A single tomato plant is germinated from seed sent by The One's father. It comes along nicely, if somewhat slow, living in the northwestern corner of the lettuce bed.

The green beans struggle to stay upright. They lie on the ground. We harvest some the beans, many more than expected. Green beans hide well. Leaves turn yellow and wither. Unharvested black beans pop out of their skins constrast against the colourless dry skin.

People say it's because it is still too warm during the day that the spinach plants don't do very well. We suffer a heatwave or two.

The single helmet chilli plant in the spinach bed does not grow. It remains the same size, with the same number of light green leaves. A lonesome chilli dangles in the wind. The chilli becomes wrinkled and drops. Ants move it into their dungeons piece by minute piece.

Morning glory creepers on the fence grow more profusely on the eastern fence than on the northern one. We discover the first fragile flowers weeks after germination. Violet flowers twist themselves into our world, dead by the next day. The One extracts the hallucinogenic substance from their seeds.

The baby marrows are the garden's champions. Maybe the marrows are planted in the most fertile part of the garden. Even the small plant that refuses to grow at the beginning produces marrows at an amazing rate. The skin on the small marrows is shiny and elastic. The mature marrows are covered with thick, smooth skin. The plants cover themselves in tiny, thorny bristles that prick when cutting the marrow from the plant. Clear gel drips from the umbilical end of the marrow and dries into snot-like globs. The plants die suddenly, less than two months after germination. Green juicy leaves become grey and dessicated. The marrows sit on top of the potatoes in the vegetable shelf. Nobody wants to eat them and slowly they wither and deflate into sad soggy skins.

Written by I
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