Lord knows I hope it ain’t so, but I hear tell the road to hell is paved with good intentions and the Lord also knows that I’m full of them. At least I personally believe that they are mostly good, politics notwithstanding.
Of course most of my intentions are predicated on the notion that other people will be agreeable co-conspirators and that they will, in fact, perform between 90 and 100 percent of the direct labor involved in most of the stuff I intend to accomplish. Several other of these good intentions involve counting numerous chicks before the eggs hatch and almost all of them assume that said eggs will be conveniently laid.
For example, I intend to grow a couple of hoops of black satin fall beans, the eggs, for which, may be somewhat difficult to come by. The terrible Charlie Brown Road drought of 2019 caused the black satin crop to fail without producing a single pod of beans to save seed. Younger brother Steve may have pulled some through and there’s a chance I can find some in the bottom of our freezer, where saved garden seeds have been accumulating for more than 20 years. Not a lot of seeds got saved last year but I have had good luck planting seeds that had been frozen for ten years, or longer.
You may recall that I got carried away with saving nearly a dozen varieties of heirloom tomato seeds during the summer of 2018. I offered them for sale to readers of this column and subsequently found myself overwhelmed. I had expected that a couple dozen of you would want some ‘mater seeds but that particular road to hell turned out to be paved harder than cast iron. I have forgotten exactly how many of you responded to the call, but the number was in the hundreds.
Thank goodness, my unofficially adopted granddaughter, 12 years old at the time, Alyssa Edwards, turned out to be the most proficient ‘mater seed counter/ handler/packager that I have ever encountered. Getting a dozen seeds inside a 2-square-inch Ziplock seed packet was taking Mr. Parkinson and me several minutes per packet. Alyssa politely suggested that I get out of her way as she stuffed well over a thousand seed packets in just a few short hours.
I intend to grow tomatoes from seed again this year, utilizing seeds we saved in 2018. I never saved a single seed last year but I still have several varieties that Alyssa packaged. Alyssa has agreed to help harvest the seeds and save them again in 2020. However, she is now a teenager and I have had enough experience raising four teenagers to know a thing or two about teenage angst so we’ll just have to see how the next tomato seed project turns out. In other words, don’t be holding your breath on this one.
I intend to purchase another 150 feet of durable garden hose. By the time last year’s drought had reached epic proportions in the garden, none of the places we checked locally still had heavy duty garden hoses in stock. The panic was already in full swing by the time I realized my garden was in trouble. As things turned out, we had, by far, the most unproductive fall garden that I’ve ever attempted to grow. I intend to get a hose long enough to reach it while hoping that the hose does nothing with more utility than hang on a hook in the garage.
Of course, none of my good gardening intentions will come close to being fulfilled unless my brother Andy is also loaded down with them. In reality, I mostly intend for Andy and Alyssa to do all the heavy lifting. In the meantime I have already purchased a lot of seeds and I intend for Loretta to dig a bunch more out of our freezer.
If the road to hell and the garden get paved, it won’t, entirely, be my fault. At least that’s my story and, as usual, I’m sticking to it.