Failure began at the beginning with the St. Patrick's Day sowing of the sugar snap peas and greens. They got buried in snow repeatedly and undoubtedly froze. There was no germination. A fine crop of lettuces and radish from a second later sowing were left in the garden to bolt. I had no energy left over for harvest once my work season began in earnest.
Then the box turtles ate most of the strawberries when they were ready.
The main garden was planted shortly after May 15th, our average annual last frost date and the rains that had rained all spring picked up a notch. It rained and rained and rained all summer. It rained and never really got hot.
The tomatoes got late blight early. Two thirds of the crop was lost.
The cucumbers got the wilt. They always get the wilt. The various squashes got stem bored and root rot. Cucumber and squash production was way off.
I gave up on growing sweet corn. Five years of feeding the raccoons was enough. This year I gambled on sweet potatoes. It's a gamble because they like it hot and I am always short on hot high on the low spot.
When the sweet potatoes finally started growing after sitting there for a month looking completely pathetic, the plants at one end of the row were constantly getting eaten down to the nub. Great, now I have rabbits. The carrot tops were disappearing too.
This is why I generally don't grow anything in the brassica family. Cabbage worms eat them faster than they grow and I'm not willing to use any pesticides. I had seeds for cauliflower and sowed them. The kale is holey the same.
But I have the wild flower surround which has loved all this rain. I have one of the prettiest pathetic vegetable gardens around no doubt.
We have been eating fresh produce despite all the problems. Little bits of every thing, tomatoes, potatoes, lettuce, chard, cucumbers, yellow squash, carrots and peppers mostly. The green beans did just fine.
There is still hope for redemption. Summer has finally arrived. The constant rains have stopped and there has been a hint of hot in the air. The sweet potatoes have actually grown quite well despite the cool. There might be a crop under there. If this hint of hot sticks around I might even get me some okra yet.
Then I saw them, the strawberry eaters, busy making more strawberry eaters. Then I wondered could they be who have been eating my sweet potato vines and carrot tops. They are vegetarians. They live in and near the vegetable garden. Sweet potato tops are an edible green. It could be.
Well I think she said no. It'd too late in the year dear. But I know they are here. I've seen her digging nesting holes. I even saw a ping pong sized box turtle this year.
I may be forced to get a turtle fence if I ever plan to eat my own strawberries.
The tall flower meadow is making up for the dismal roadside vegetable garden. It is having a wonderful year.
And the vegetable garden? I'll be putting it to sleep soon and will try again next year with a fresh coat of wood chip mulch. Maybe I can manage to get some of my composted manure up there.