All that work….

I have had a small vegetable garden for several years. Well, I say “vegetable garden” but it has been more like a weed garden than anything else. I have to confess that it have been several years since I have had anything resembling a successful vegetable garden.  I had high hopes this year. Please note that I wrote “had” high hopes. They were crushed today along with my pride and dignity.

                Yes, it has been another year of dashed hopes. I did have a very good year with strawberries and blackberries and that was pretty much it. Between the lack of rain and the ubiquitous weeds, the rest was a small disaster.  My final hope of anything close to success occurred today. It is from the depth of depression that I write the following:

                Last winter, I made out my elaborate plan that included corn, beans, acorn squash, tomatoes, strawberries, blackberries, cantaloupe, and potatoes. I was particularly excited about potatoes. For one, because I like them and, two, because I had found a plan to build an above ground potato bin.  The plan called for a four foot square bin built of wood. This plan required several 2×6 boards that would be attached to 1×1” poles tp form a stack. The bottom section was attached and filled with dirt. It was in this first level that the potatoes were planted. As the potatoes grew, a level of boards was attached and dirt filled in. At its top, it was four feet high with a total of sixty-four square feet of dirt.  Here is what it SHOULD look like.

                Well, today was the day that I planned to open my nice bin and watch the expected cascade of potatoes tumble out. I had envisioned at least one hundred pounds (that was the amount the designer said he had harvested). I took off one board and a single medium sized potato presented itself. “Ah,” I thought to myself, “just the first of many.” I took a second board off. Nothing.  A third board also produced not a single spud. The fourth and fifth boards revealed not even the hint of a potato. I removed the bottom board, opening the entirety of one side. There was not a single potato to be seen. “Well, “I said to my wife who was in attendance (and also holding out hope that her faithful husband would be the provider once again), “They are probably all on the other sides.” I pulled the bin up and away from the four foot high mound of dirt with the full expectation that I would be bowled over in a tidal wave of “taters.” The packed mound of dirt revealed….a packed mound of dirt. I dug into the mound while telling my wife, “They are buried in the center where it is better for them.”  I dug and dug. Out popped two very small spuds. I dug some more. I got my shovel and dug even deeper.

                If my wife had not been witness to this miniscule harvest, I think I would have gone to the store and picked up a bag of potatoes and planted them in there just so I could save my pride.

                So now you know the rest of the story. Aren’t you glad I’m NOT a farmer?

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