Growing up, my mom always had a huge vegetable garden. I learned quickly as a child to never complain about being bored in the summer because it meant mom would find me something to do. Quite often, that something involved weeding the garden. I never wanted anything to do with vegetable gardens, they seemed like so much work.
Oddly enough, I’ve really enjoyed flower gardens my whole adult life but never considered planting a vegetable garden until this year.
When I started my very first vegetable garden this spring, I was truly clueless. It had been over 25 years since I’d spent time in a vegetable garden as a child.
I learned many gardening lessons this season, some through research, some through experience and mistakes.
I researched on-line how far apart my rows should be and then my mom said I could have put them closer when she saw my garden.
I learned that bunnies are able to destroy an entire month’s worth of bean growth overnight.
I learned how to put up a darn good rabbit fence and solve the my-garden-is-a-bunny-salad-bar problem.
I learned that seven zucchini plants are about five too many for a couple and everyone they know.
I learned that when you think a zucchini is the perfect size, you must pick it. Immediately. If you do not, when you look at it a few hours later, it will have grown to monstrous size.
I found that I love to go out on a random Saturday and pick all kinds of vegetables from my garden. It makes me smile.
I learned that stuffing fresh jalapeno halves with cream cheese, wrapping them with bacon and baking them in a oven is an excellent idea.
I learned not to take my contacts out after seeding jalapenos.
As the season is winding down, I’ve got more tomatoes to pick. But, in the next few weeks, we will get frost and the garden season will come to a close. My first vegetable garden has had some successes, some failures, but mostly, it’s been a whole lot of fun. I’ve already started thinking about what I will plant next year.