Thursday, September 10, 2009

My Poor Tomato Plant

I’ve never had a green thumb. If I’d been a pioneer woman, my poor family would have died from starvation before our first summer. There’d be wooden crosses erected in my children’s memory bemoaning the fact that their inept mother couldn’t even grow a squash. A squash! Everyone knows those things grow like weeds. Only not in my garden.

I tried a full-fledged garden one year when the boys were little. I’d been reading a bunch of parenting magazines which had touted the benefit of growing your own food. No chemicals for your growing child. Valuable time spent together away from the television. Watching the fresh food sprout and grow expands your child’s brain until he’s smart enough to be the world’s first kindergarten-aged rocket scientist.

Okay, so I made that last bit up, but the magazines did really make gardening out to be this wonderful family adventure.

Uh, not so much.

First of all we had to dig and plant the seeds. When you’re a kid, digging’s only fun if it has no purpose. Digging big enough ditches in the middle of the yard to trap the lawn mower? Yep, that’s fun. Digging in the mud in your church clothes? Can’t think of anything better. Digging to make a garden? Now that just seems like work.

The kids dropped their hoes in about two minutes and let me finish the digging part. They came back just in time to put the seeds in the ground. Only instead of evenly spacing them, we had twenty seeds in a clump every ten feet or so. That’s my explanation for why the seeds didn’t sprout into anything resembling the colorful produce on the package.

After that garden failed to produce anything other than some deer food and a bunch of weeds, I swore off the gardening thing. Never, ever again would I try to produce my own food. Why bother when the grocery store stocked everything I needed? Besides that, I have a brother with a green thumb. I could just steal his tomatoes and squash and blame it on the deer.

Then I saw IT. The amazing Topsy Turvy tomato planter. Anyone... and the infomercial did say ANYONE could grow mounds of delicious tomatoes with this wonderful invention. It looked so easy. It looked so foolproof. It looked like something that year’s ago could have saved Pioneer children from certain starvation.

I tried it expecting big results. So you tell me, from looking at the picture. Does this look like a bountiful enough harvest to keep my family from starving?

Looks like I'm back to stealing from my brother, Bill's garden.  And in case he asks, I really did see some hungry deer heading his way.

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