It has been approximately 60 hours since it last rained here at Country Haven. According to our informal calculations, that’s the longest stretch of dry weather we’ve had since mid-June when our three-week drought broke. We’ve received over 20 inches of rain in 6 weeks. That’s a lot of water. A couple more inches are forecasted for tomorrow morning.
We have repeatedly mowed between the rows in our gardens to keep the weeds down until it was dry enough to actually run the tiller through. Potatoes are rotting in the ground, green beans are molding on their bushes, pepper plants are yellowing, squash plants are wilting. I mowed down our first two plantings of green beans yesterday; the leaves were the color of lemonade. Poor things were probably glad to be put out of their misery. I usually have more than 120 quarts of green beans canned by now. This year, I’ve put up twenty-seven.
And our pepper plants! To get a better look at a growing pepper, I gently moved aside some of the spotted, yellow leaves on one of the scrawny plants, and three of its leaves dropped to the ground, reminding me of Charlie Brown’s Christmas tree. Poor, pitiful thing!
Fortunately, we planted way too much of almost everything, so it will be enough to have something every week until the first frost hits. We keep re-planting, too, using next year’s seed that we bought to save shipping costs on next year’s garden. I don’t know if this amounts to optimism or foolishness; time will tell.
In spite of the tendency to focus on all of our loss this year, I cannot help but be thankful for all that we have. In some parts of the world, these conditions would have a direct and possibly dire effect on the nutritional needs of the growers. We are so fortunate that this is not the case with us. Even without having the extra produce to can and freeze for the winter, we can rest assured that our bellies will be fed nonetheless. And, without the extra income that we hoped our abundant harvest would bring, we know that our bills will still be paid.
What a blessing.