I still have to work hard to resist them. The catalogs filled with beautiful, full-color images of corn and strawberries and squash and green beans . . . I don’t even have a garden. Oh, I sometimes grow a pot of tomatoes on the porch or plant some herbs in the flower bed, but I don’t have a place to grow rainbow blend carrots no matter how gorgeous they are all clean and perfectly straight.
The problem is, I know all too well how wonderful fresh garden produce is. And it’s been long enough that I’ve forgotten the agony of weeding, harvesting, and putting up.
So when the catalogs start rolling in, I begin to have delusions of grandeur. I can envision glossy, yellow ears of corn; watermelons that split open with a satisfying crack; and multi-hued peppers hanging like Christmas ornaments.
Bush beans, sugar snap peas, heirloom tomatoes, and baby lettuces wilted in a little bacon grease. Oh, the seed companies have my number!
When we were kids, Dad would sometimes let us pick something to grow in the garden. One year it was popcorn (which didn’t do well at all!). I always wanted watermelon, but the only time I remember it growing satisfactorily that far north was when we pitched rinds over the fence and the vines came up on their own.
I’ll probably attempt to grow something this year. I’ll succumb to the bedding plants at the garden center and tuck some peas between the cosmos or plant a hill of squash under the mock orange. I’ll be surprised if it amounts to much. Mostly it’s just a nod to memories that grow prettier each spring when I pull them out and polish them once again.
Tomato and mayonnaise sandwich, anyone?