At the end of this month my baby brother will get married on the beautiful stretch of land my parents own in Bastrop, Texas. For months there has been a frenzy of projects throughout the ranch in preparation of the upcoming deadline. This weekend I took in the progress. There is a gorgeous deck and a highly anticipated pool, but my favorite is the expanded landscape. My eyes were drawn to the tiny blooms on the lovely “butterfly trees.”
Our lime tree is growing, just not any limes.
Our fig tree is a much taller stick, with occasional leaves and fruit that never ripens before falling off the branches.
Our avocado tree died, twice.
Our compost bin is quite literally a feeding trough for rats.
Our rain barrels are cracking under the weight of all the water they are collecting for our non-use.
Our garden beds are weedy, but that trooper of our rosemary plant continues to bring its aromatic gifts to the table.
I tried to plant a much too belated spring/summer garden after our first winter success.
However, the shade and the drought and my all-day sickness meant it ended up a pile of weeds.
Last fall we tried again, with friends, and were met with the same fate.
Here’s the thing. I don’t like gardening. Ben has no interest in it. Bugs gross me out, a lot, and I’d rather sit on the couch and watch The West Wing than tend to the garden on a daily basis. I do love the idea of a garden though, oh so very much.
I’ve decided the idea is not enough to continue my fruitless investments. Organic soil and compost and fertilizer and plants add up to quite a bit of change, especially when there no return on the investment. Yes, if we had rich soil and used our compost to actually create that brown gold instead of feeding vermin and grew our plants from seeds and everything actually grew, yes, it would be quite a frugal endeavor. Not to mention all the positive environmental implications.
However, for $650 I can order a share of local produce from our co-op every other week. For $260 we can buy a dozen fresh yard eggs every week. It is almost exactly what we need, and I have minimal encounters with bugs. And so this is what we are doing.
Someday, maybe this spring, I’ll clean up the beds and plant a thing or two. Not for real ambition, for Leila. I want her to see how we get the stuff on our plates and take an interest in the nuances of growing it. Plus what kid doesn’t enjoy playing the dirt, with bugs? Who knows, maybe she’ll get the hang of it, and we can have that amazing garden after all.