Mary, Mary, Quite Contrary

yellow pear tomatoes ripening...

How does your garden grow? It grows very well, thank you. In fact it’s growing too well. My tomatoes grew faster than I could keep up with and now the branches are huge and heavy and not off the ground like they are supposed to be because I didn’t tie them up in time. I’ve been doing my best, climbing through the jungle of leaves and vines and green tomatoes and tying them up as tightly as I can before the branches themselves break from the weight but it’s not going so well. I may lose a lot of them.

bumper crop

Which won’t be the end of the world because I think I have about a thousand green tomatoes. If I lose 50 of them, I think I’ll still have more than I could ever eat, can and make salsa with.

smashed up tomato patch

An unfortunate thing happened this last weekend. I decided to leave my dog, Holly, out for the day and let the neighbor feed her that night instead of taking her to my mom’s like I usually do. I didn’t want to do this because the weather has been oppressively hot and my dog, who used to be an outdoor dog and stayed outside for five years of her life, is spoiled rotten now and likes to spend most of her time indoors, sleeping under the air vent. It was so sad. As I locked her out she looked at me with giant puppy dog eyes and her tongue hanging out.

But sometimes dogs have to stay outside. The patio was cool and shaded and she had some nice cement to lie on, I thought. So I put it out of my mind and went onto our normal weekend activities in Orange County.

hot dog

Well, Holly got hot. Do you know what dogs do when they’re hot and bored? They dig into the nice cool dirt in the tomato patch. She dug to China and made all kinds of tunnels through the tomato branches on her way there. Broken branches, busted leaves, green tomatoes everywhere. It was not a happy sight to come home to. But I couldn’t be too mad at her. I probably would have done the same thing if I’d been left outside all day in one-hundred degree weather when I’m used to the five star resort that is the indoors.

So I’ve forgiven her and promised I’ll never leave her out again.

green tomatoes

Anybody have any good fried green tomato recipes?

The Ninja Gardeners are Afraid of My Dogs

my ninja gardeners are afraid of my dog

I have a screamin’ deal on gardening. They come every other week and it only costs me forty bucks a month. In Orange County I’d probably pay $400 a month and that would be for a tiny little strip of land that was two feet wide. Not here, my gardeners love me and I love them back. I tip them mightily when I can afford it.

backyard

The thing is, they are ninja gardeners and they come secretly when I’m not looking. It was like magic. No blasting leaf blowers waking the baby up (who of course is no longer a baby and no longer naps but you know what I mean) no crazy mowing at all hours of the day…I’d just leave for an errand and come back to a perfectly taken care of back yard when I least expected it. What a perfect set up!

Bug pretending to be stuck in quicksand

But then I got a fence put in and I let the dogs run loose in the backyard when I’m out running errands. Suddenly, the grass started growing and growing and it seemed like the ninja gardeners were no longer making their magical visits. I guess it’s a good thing for my security that my dogs are scary enough to even keep the gardeners away, but I sort of miss their stealthiness. Now I have to call and set up an appointment like regular people. But they’re still cheap so I won’t complain.

My favorite gardener, Louie

And now I have photographic proof they exist!