The Gahden 2022: Bring It

If you have been along for my ride for a bit, you may know that I upped my gardening game last year, which involved some mawnstah hostas. I left those two alone because they could easily have swallowed a small child, but this year I had back up, and my friends/land-divas Lora and Crista helped me chop them up into harmless sized plants. We placed them in a more normal pattern around the yard, where they can’t harm anyone except maybe a squirrel, and those garden digging bahstids get what they deserve. Maybe I can earn extra money in my retirement by growing those monsters again and selling them off in bits. They start at 25 bucks a pop.

This year, Lora and Crista also saw fit to grant me access to the entire border of the yard, which for Boston is like a bazillion acres. OK, maybe not quite that big, but my gardening space has pretty much tripled this year, so it’s a good thing I slipped down that slope last year going from several pots to 7 or 8. Otherwise, I would totally be shitting bricks for being responsible for all this:

Naw, I’m not worried at all. *Cough*. But fuck it, I’m in it now, and since I’ve read that book Braiding Sweetgrass, I’m going to relationship the hell out of these plants. Er, I mean, I love you Mother Earth!

In addition to the usual tomatoes, cucumbers, and sweet potatoes, I’m doing the three sisters planting that I learned about in Braiding Sweetgrass — growing corn, beans, and squash together. My first lesson came almost immediately. As my gardening friend Becky, who gives me my tomatoes, succinctly put it. “Corn doesn’t like to be transplanted.” I was being an eager beaver and planted some corn indoors before my area was cleared for the final frost. I’m getting ahead! I’m cheating winter! I proudly planted them in the raised bed and went away for Memorial Day Weekend, only to find 2 of the 6 down when I returned.

Right. Corn goes right in the dirt after the last chance of frost. Got it. Maybe I’d better reread that book.

I have several plants I overwintered, which I am also proud of. And that means I should probably be cautious because my pride/ignorance apparently kills plants.

I am keeping a close eye on the pepper plant, that defied the odds last year and defeated the marauding rodents. I also have 3 jilo plants (Brazilian eggplant) that also survived the winter indoors and an infestation of little nasty white bugs. One already has an eggplant growing, one has flowers, and the 3rd one, well, it’s looking a little lackluster and may be a victim of my pride; we’ll have to see.

So what else did I do with my bazillion acres? I bought some flowers to fill the big boxes, and now I know why people invest in perennials. Cuz those pretty things ain’t cheap. But since I am just starting, I was afraid of plant commitment, and decided to have a summer fling instead. I can think about commitment next year.

I also have oregano I overwintered, and bunches of basil and parsley I bought. I invited the neighbors in my building to take what herbs they would like. If they all survive, I will look like a really great neighbor, and if they don’t, well, maybe I can send them baked goods.

So that’s about it. June is always so full of gardening promise. It’s like being pleasantly drunk. I know the hangover (bugs, worms, leaf rot, and mold) is coming, but for now, I’m having a lovely time.


  1. Color me impressed! That whole set-up takes a lot of tenacity and hard work.

    Looking forward to updates throughout the summer. The trials. The tribulations. And the triumphant dinner plate pics. 👍

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