I had planned to build my garden this spring after moving to my new home in November. Now I will always remember this garden as the one I built during the pandemic. I left my large and well-established garden behind a few months ago and thought that was bad timing as grocery store shelves were emptied. Now I’m glad I had to start a new garden because it kept me busy creating and gave me hope for the future. It reminded me that it’s possible to start over and make life better the second (or third or fourth) time.
Even though work has been stressful with converting everything to online, this staying-at-home order has given me the opportunity to devote my time to building my new life here. I imagined moving to a new town and getting involved with my community through lots of volunteering and attending local events. I still want to be involved in my new town, but I know myself, I try to do everything at once. Being forced to stay home has meant I can settle in here and when the world slowly reopens I can begin to connect.
I haven’t had to make excuses or get odd looks when I say I can’t do something because I have a garden to build. That’s my silver lining for this pandemic.
As for my pandemic garden, there’s spring excitement: my seeds from last week are germinating! Rattlesnake and red noodle beans, a mesclun mix of lettuce, Kiku Chrysanthemum melon (a small Japanese melon I can grow vertically), and a variety of cucumbers…
In other garden news this week, I finished the fourth trellis and planted the bed with tomatoes, eggplants, peppers, and marigold seeds.
I got a late start on planting my seeds inside this year for transplants, so I picked up a sweet pepper seedling at the nursery before the stay-at-home order began and it’s starting to flower!
I also finished the fifth bed along one side of the fence and planted Seminole Pumpkin and Tatume Squash seeds to grow up the fence and Rainbow Chard to grow beneath them. I’m in the middle of constructing a pumpkin tunnel for the vines to grow over. I need to put the wire along the top, but after the wire wrestling I had with the trellises, I’m not looking forward to this. I think I have plenty of time considering my pumpkin seeds haven’t germinated.
As for work, the countdown continues with two weeks of classes and then finals. I have papers to grade for one section that I’ve managed to procrastinate since Thursday (maybe that’s how I got so much done in the garden). I’m down to three lectures to record and one lab to write (which I need by this Wednesday, so that needs to happen soon). Summer vacation (at home) arrives in a few more weeks!