Well, it's not really just my garden. My father in law is the one who is chiefly responsible for all things growing in our garden this year. He faithfully tends the flowers, sows the seeds, prunes the fruit trees, saves the fruit from the birds with nets and so on. He is the one we all go to when we want to know what we should do with a plant, which is a weed to pull, what fertilizer to use etc. I am a very spoilt woman. I don't have to worry that I've forgotten to fertilize, water, trim, weed, plant. Because he always and he never puts off what needs to be done now.
The fruit trees were already planted when we purchased the house as was the strawberry patch. For the past three years we have enjoyed an abundance in strawberries. I have made strawberry shortcake, strawberry pie and strawberry jam and, of course, just plain old sliced strawberries, any kids' favourite. I just love creating dishes with food that came from our garden and know that nothing is on those berries that I don't know about. This year our fruit trees (peaches, apples and pears) are finally producing more abundantly so I have lots of planning to do for those. It's great that we share the crop with my in laws otherwise it would be absolutely overwhelming dealing with all of it and seeing that none goes to waste.
In our vegetable garden we have peas, carrots, corn, tomatoes, beets (yuck), beans, cucumbers, and of course potatoes. Those are an absolute must. My FIL is an absolute potato fiend. He loves potatoes so much that he takes pride and no small amount of pleasure in showing you particularly large sized potatoes that he has grown. He has even been known on occasion to take a picture of one. I'm not joking!
Normally we have beans growing like crazy as well but he didn't put any in because don't you know our house was supposed to have been SOLD by now. Darn house. So no beans. That's okay. I only like beans so much and they grow so abundantly that you literally have to eat great heaping bowlfuls every day just to use them up. Something he may not mind but I definitely don't like eating the same vegetable every day.
This year we have sunflowers. They were a surprise. That is one thing I love about gardening, you never know what's going to show up. Last year we had strange varieties of squash which makes sense because we all occasionally have eaten squash and composted said remains etc. But the sunflowers, well they are a complete surprise. Some bird flying over must have dropped those seeds into our garden for us to discover. Under my FIL's care those Sunflowers are growing big and strong. Last time I tried to grow sunflowers, they lasted a month then I over watered them or something cause they all wilted and died.
Then there are the raspberries. Our neighbour has a raspberry bush growing along side our shared fence line. Well some of those vines were growing under our side of the fence. My FIL knows I love raspberries so he transplanted a couple into our garden so I'd have my own raspberry bush to take along with us when we move. He did that last year and this year the bush has grown so amazingly big that I will have to cut it back just to be able to move it. Note this is taking up precious garden space.
So today, we ate cherries from our cherry tree, raspberries from our raspberry bush and strawberries from our strawberry patch.
We don't live on a big piece of property, this is a small .19 acre lot. We've given up a good stretch of our back yard to this garden but not only does it feed this family it gives great delight and joy to the man who works it.
So I will say it again I am a spoiled woman. I have all the benefits of a garden without the hassle of caring for it because let's face it with 3 small children, I'd be lucky to get the strawberries picked never mind fertilized.
I am going to miss him when we do finally move. I am sure I won't realize just how much until I'm planting that garden on my own.
I love my garden and I love my father in law.