As we were getting ready to leave for our two-week trip to Virginia, I had to make sure the garden was ready to be taken care of by someone other than myself. I mulched. I sprayed the watered down milk on the squash leaves to slow down the powdery mildew. I heavily harvested the basil. I printed out detailed instructions. I gave away what we couldn’t eat. I packed six ripe tomatoes and two cucumbers into our carry on luggage. Who could part with the summer’s first ripe tomatoes?
As I spent these final moments in the garden, I gazed at the nearly ripe cantaloupes, the first of the eggplants elongating, the reddening bell peppers, and the tomato plants heavy with fruit just beginning to turn red, and I thought, we have to remember to plan our trip earlier in the summer next year. It is hard to leave in the hands of another, the garden you have carefully tended to, especially at the moment it starts to produce so much produce you have the delightful problem of figuring out what to do with all of it.
And so, we left and came back two weeks later….