Travel companions.

We’re looking at dates now. Perhaps we leave in a month. Perhaps longer. In all the planning there is, planning which plants to try and bring, which to give away, and who, if anyone, is eager to garden-sit… is quite overwhelming.

The three blackberries will go to a friend. The potted plum to my in-laws. Perhaps they’d like the blueberries, too.

Do you think this giant chard would mind two weeks in damp newspapers if I gave it a severe haircut first?

Napoleon will come with us. He first made the voyage here with us seventeen years ago as a little 1” specimen.

I’m tempted to harvest tomatoes green and wrap them in paper. A book I’ve just received discusses the method as a winter storage option. Surely it’s possible for any green tomatoes you might need to pick early.

The onions started falling over, so I’m starting their curing in batches. Trying this, learning that, one group of toppled tops at a time.

And then there are the carrots to pickle and the cucumbers to… pickle. Perhaps some dry beans will dry in time.

But I believe these are the last of my seeds I’ll sow for awhile. And I’ll never eat the sweet potatoes, okra, or melon on their way. I hope the popcorn finish as we’re ready to pack them in, and that the sweet corn make a delicious farewell feast appearance.

I’ll not count the gardens I’ve started and said goodbye to. I’ll remember this one as the best yet and the breeding ground for making home-farm dreams seem achievable. And I’ll miss it dearly, idyllically, forgetting the summer’s blasting heat coming and the bare earth during planting’s “winter” in the dead of July and August.

A few hundred shy.

A quick visit to the garden for greens and rabbit-proof-fence checks with the kids.

A silent passerby in work boots and community shirt.

A dirt pile mountain to climb and a successfully stable barrier.

A friendly, yet reserved, hello.

“If you like onions, I pulled a ton out of a bed I was clearing for a new owner. They’re in the bin.”

– We have a good number already but I won’t argue with more onions.

“They’re right here. These will grow, right? They look like the dried up ones you can buy at (big box store) and they aren’t dry. They’ll be ok for people how I laid them out?”

– *inhales deeply, enjoying fresh onion green smells* They will grow just fine. They might not bulb, or they might, but they’re definitely happy to be green onions.

“Ok, good! I already put some in the plot by the workshop but there were just so many I didn’t want to go to waste so I laid them out nicely, a whole wheel barrow full!, so others could gather as they wanted.”

– They look great and are easy to retrieve and use – thank you for telling me and taking care of them.

After I picked out a few bundles for me, my in-laws, and a friend, and two days passed, I took a picture of how many were still left.

I also saved some chard because beautiful deliciousness.

I’m familiar with foraging but this was my first encounter with foraging plants from a compost heap.