I haven’t a clue how to garden, but I’m working on a story for Texas A&M right now about their community garden. They have these amazing gardens on campus, part of which are designed to feed the hungry. In the process of working on this article, I found out about a plant sale on campus where herbs and small vegetable plants were on sale for dirt cheap (pun intended). I’m talking basil plants for $2 and lettuce plants for a buck!
I felt the little green leaves calling to me as I stood among the black plastic trays taking photos. Having tried before but failed, I had to buy some and re-try my hand at gardening. Maybe Texas will prove a better place for my green thumb to blossom. Aren’t gardens to vegetarians who like to cook the equivalent of what giant stereo systems are to frat guys who like party? So, I picked out some lettuce plants, some basil, rosemary, swiss chard, artichokes, and brussels sprouts, and set out to meet my destiny.
Little box, big dreams
Technically, this should come easy to me. My mom’s mother, my Baba, has a yard that is a wonderland of fruit trees and plants. She lives in a not-so-great neighborhood, but her house has always been a tiny oasis in that area: she grows perfect tomatoes, prize-winning-pie-worthy cherries and berries that I’ve never even heard of.
Naturally, my mother has also inherited this tendency. She frequently brings home plants she’s found on the side of the road. The leaves on these discarded shrubs are shriveled and brown, but somehow, my mother’s magic touch will turn them verdant, ready to live again. We had so many plants (many of which were “saved” from the garbage truck) at my home growing up that my friends could identify our house by all the foliage in the window–they even began referring to our living room as “the jungle.”
This weekend, Patrick is going on a boy’s weekend, and I’m going to try to plant a garden. Wish me luck, friends. I hope I don’t wind up killing these beautiful little plants. If you have any advice, feel free to share it here. Lord knows, the world doesn’t need any more dead plants on the side of the road, and my mother doesn’t need any more plants in her living room.