Sunday, May 18, 2008

Light Brown Thumb

I hate gardening. I don't like digging, I don't like pulling out weeds, I don't like getting dirty, and I hate that dying plants reek of the stench of failure. Yet, very year I go out in my yard determined to try and make things grow. Yesterday Ryan and I went to the local garden center where I bought 75 DOLLARS worth of plants and the stuff that is supposed to make them grow. You know, dirt and horse shit. Actually, looking at the box this appears to be made out of fish shit. That makes it so much more worthwhile. But I digress...

I decided to buy about four different varieties of tomatoes, since that is pretty much the only vegetable I actually think tastes better when grown at home. The rest still taste like vegetables, but a home grown tomato -- look out. I actually once found a perfume that smelled like good tomatoes and I almost bought it before I became concerned I would sprinkle my arm with salt and pepper and try to eat it. Wow, digressing again... I also bought two different kinds of basil, oregano, and salad greens. Oh, and seeds for sunflowers to plant in the plot of land that is currently growing nothing but weeds.

Now, if gardening were simple I could have just gone home, dug holes, put the plants in, put the fish shit in, filled the holes with dirt, and walked away. After all, even that is quite a bit of work, especially considering that things grow randomly every day. But no, it takes a lot more effort than that. First of all, I had to prepare the soil, which basically meant pulling out everything currently growing in it to make room for the stuff I want to grow there. Then I had to spread in the fertilizer, put in water and let that sit -- because, don't you know, if I hadn't done that the fertilizer would have actually killed the plants I want it to help grow. I think it must be made by Irony Labs.

Once the soil was "prepared" I carefully pulled the plants out of their little plastic boxes and placed them in the ground, spacing them just enough so they would have room to grow, but not feel lonely. Then I watered them and sang them a lullaby. And what did they do? Nothing. And what are they doing tonight? Nothing. You see, that is the real pisser about gardening. It's like watching plants grow. Oh, yea, there are plenty of things you can do in the meantime, like weed, and water, and check the pH balance, but really, that's just horticultural masturbation to make up for the fact that at the heart of it all, gardening is a waiting game. And I hate to wait. I mean, what will I get at the end of the weeks of waiting, and watching, and making "planter's tea" to feed to the little buggers? Well, last year it was one rock hard green tomato the size of a hamster nut. And not a very well hung hamster at that. But it did smell delicious.

Maybe this year I'll get two... That would definitely make it all worthwhile.