Tuesday, May 19, 2009
For as long as I can remember, my dad had a garden. I don't know if he tried to grow things when he was growing up but I can close my eyes and picture him in the back of the yard at the Massapequa (if you can't pronounce it you've probably never been to Long Island) house I grew up in. It wasn't the prettiest garden but who cares as long as the vegetables/fruits are good. He grew tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchini, and maybe a few other things. The family had a good laugh every year when he'd come into the house with some giant vegetable. Dad was a contractor so he used leftover building supplies to string up his vines and to try to create a wall that would keep the rabbits out.
One year, we started a second garden. I planted green beans...my favorite. The beans never made it into the house...I ate them right off the vines.
Also in the backyard we had a cherry tree, an apple tree, and a pear tree. I don't remember the cherries but I do remember that one year dad pruned the tree back to far and it died. The pears were small but wonderful...very hard. When you would take a bite, a chunk would break off...just the way I like them. Somehow the apples always stayed on the tree too long. When they fell to the ground, they would ferment and the birds eating them would get drunk. It was funny watching them fly around crazy. Unfortunately there would be one or two that had trouble avoiding the side of the house or a window.
The picture above was taken in 2004. My dad has been building a house in central Florida for about 6 years. Before the house was even framed, dad had a garden. The house is located in the National Forest so he will have a lot of critters to contend with. I'm sure he'll figure it out. One reason he loves to grow his own vegetables is because he's very thrifty with his money but I think he'd do it even if he was rich. He enjoys it too much.