We used to have this lovely large patch of Common Milkweed in the upper back field – I based an entire garden around it, separating it into large wedges with picket fencing (which my marvelous man made out of pallets) and dreaming of a classic or at least interesting sundial in the center. Something happened to the milkweed – the last couple of years it has been waning little by little and now there is little left. I think next year I will have to rake in some seeds in the early Spring (if I can, or maybe I should do it this Fall) and hopefully it will return. Instead, I have a small scraggly patch around the well-cap (a ubiquitous sight here in Mid-Maine, ugly well-caps across lawns everywhere!) and a few here and there (in La Petite Jardin, in the yard, a few in the garden) where I have been lucky enough to spy little stripey Monarch caterpillars munching away (we may still bring one in to cocoon indoors and then set him free – the child likes that process very much, and since we’ve been missing the yearly Bug Fair, it’s a nice connection).
I’ve been pretty ill since early Spring (a lovely cascade of Lyme resurgences in many terrible ways) so it is a struggle to get where we need to be. Josh is so amazing in his ability to prioritize and get the important facets taken care of – new business licensing, inspections, improvements, equipment, sales capabilities, and of course, the most important part – the bakes! D has been watching her few false starts of pumpkin growing come to possible fruition (the meat chicks ate the first couple but there seem to be a couple that defied them and are now 6-8 inches and will hopefully grow to full size – she’s very excited.
And so we continue to harvest what we can – the grapes failed and we neglected the blackberries this year but we’re getting tons of pole beans/bush beans, husk cherries, and cherry tomatoes. The apples are coming in – too many for us to know what to do with but not enough yet to start something big. We’ve been gathering many herbs and foraged tea material, juniper berries (with a little snake friend!). The Purple Tomatillos are still growing well, along with the Turkish Eggplants, and Wonderberries. We downsized the garden because we have such great local organic CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) shares and Farmer’s Markets and ‘honor’ farmstands that we can focus on the rarer ingredients we prefer or can’t find and by next year, flowers. We shall see – we aren’t in planning stages yet, we’re still enjoying the work around here that needs to get done but we have inklings.
Inklings abound. May you be inspired to have inklings of your own.