Saturday, June 21, 2008

To Weed or Not to Weed that is the Question...

Before I left for Iowa I spent some quality time in my garden. Everywhere I looked, I had what are called volunteer tomatoes. Volunteer tomatoes are the ones that grow up from last year's rotten ones. We have many and they are popping up all over the yard. This is because we have been faithfully composting all year and as we prepared to plant the garden we spread the compost around. I have tomato plants in every nook and cranny of the garden.

This is a blessing to be sure. Our seedlings this year were started late and are much smaller than these volunteers. In addition, the variety of last year was unparalleled. I think we had 11 varieties in all. Now, I believe we may be at 15 varieties or so (traditional red, pink, cherry, grape, purple, white, yellow, orange, striped etc)- depending on what volunteer tomatoes grow.

But, I have a problem. There are probably 100+ volunteer tomatoes all growing in planted sections of the garden. One particularly strong one is in the broccoli. And, knowing last year's crop, this plant will probably be about 5 ft tall and 3 feet wide- quite a space grabber. I begrudgingly acknowledged that I needed to remove these plants- breaking my heart though it did.

So, I began the pulling process. Tomato after tomato plant, set aside, ready for composting.

As I did this I remembered a friend's words saying that a weed is any plant that you don't want. She, Charity, said this as we took a tour of my back yard trying to identify plants. This is my first year at the house so my yard is filled with surprises. I could see what she meant- I was looking at the violets that carpet certain sections of the garden as beautiful and I think she saw them as something she could do without- if it were her choice.

So, I pulled and pulled these tomato weeds.

It made me think that there are times when we all feel like weeds- unwanted, untapped potential.......... The difference though is that we can replant ourselves and begin again.

And sometimes, we have to weed out persons, feelings or circumstances in order to breathe or increase our potential to grow. This does not mean that these circumstances are not in thier own right good things, but just like these tomatoes of mine, they may not be right for the garden at hand.
Well, I came back from Iowa and after all that pulling, 50 more tomato plants grew up in the other's place. I suppose I know what I will be doing tomorrow. I guess it may take time and several tries to get things just so to grow my garden well. I look forward to the harvest! I wonder what varieties will greet me then?
By the way, in Reynoldsburg, Ohio, they celebrate the almightly tomato in true fashion. In September, they will host the tomato festival. I hope to be one of the many that partake in the food, music and fun.

No comments: