It's still going on out there in the greenhouse.
The Great Gourd Vine Takeover.
The vines are filling the entire space and rolling up the other wall,
tapping on the glass and fairly waving with glee.
My guys think I've gone over to the freaky side of gardening.
"Your own little shop of horrors, Mom?"
That comment almost inspired me to snip some vine ends and put a stop to the
But then I look out the kitchen window and see gourds ripening on the roof
of the greenhouse . . .
and the sunbeams shining through the scruffly summer-colored leaves.
I mean the leaves that haven't been ruined with powdery mildew. Yet.
And I know I have to let this gardening (mis)adventure finish its course.
The first frost is not so far away, even if we hate to admit it, and the
party will come to its own end.
But I'll have a whole basket full of egg gourds!
This spring my guys built a planting box for me, my Mother's Day gift. Finally I could outwit the
rabbits and whatever other critters that always have eaten any vegetable I've ever planted.
So I put in tomatoes, up high where nothing could dine on them - except for us!
The tomatoes that stayed green for way too long, finally went ripe and just keep comin'.
So we've eaten a lot of BLT's this summer.
Now I've moved the family on to salsa, and they're still loving it.
There's a bucket of juicy ripe ones on the back porch right now. If I don't get to salsa making
today, I'll be dumping them over the fence tomorrow and hoping no one catches me wasting the 'maters.
It's funny how what was long anticipated and much celebrated - the first ripe tomato -
has dropped in value and almost seems like a burden now, here in mid-September.
Fishing has been a part of our warm-weather seasons around here ... forever.
In our dating years, my wonderful husband and I spent hours sitting lakeside, watching bobbers float on rippled, glass-like surfaces. Good conversations had a chance to bloom out there, and our friendship grew.
The mini powdered donuts just enhanced the romance.
As soon as our little boys were able to cast a line, they joined the fishing crew, the differing levels of their
patience dictating the success and/or failure of a fishing trip. For quite a while, My Youngest thought he was really fishing with just a long stick resting in the shallow water's edge. He would take his stick-pole out of the water to examine the wet tip and wonder aloud: WHY are the fish not biting???
Eventually, he became the most avid fisherman of the group, except for his dad, of course.
When our boys were learning the art of angling, I watched my husband give up his fishing opportunities
to detangle lines from branches, re-bait hooks, remove and celebrate every hooked fish.
And isn't that what parenting is so often about?
That high-demand season of life passed, not so quickly, but still, it did pass,
and now my husband again fishes uninterrupted. His boys can all fish on their own.
Now their camraderie is what I admire, on display as they share lures and bait, advice and taunts.
And, of course - powdered donuts.
no romance included
The air here is clear and crisp.
It's lost the weight of high summer heat and while the rays are still hot,
they feel oddly light on the skin.
It's fall air, that's all.
If you need more evidence of the change of season ...
CANDY CORN is on the shelves.
And you need some.
We're on the edge of fall over here, even though it feels more like summer now than summer actually did.
But the vast insect chorus has begun to sing its fall selections, and you know there's no going back.
I like bulky sweaters, new boxes of crayons and pumpkin spice cappuccino as much as the next person; fall does have its unique charms. Yet something inside me clings to summer and mourns a little, tiny bit at every passing Labor Day.
I love a good gourd vine - who doesn't?
We planted this one in a new raised bed just outside the greenhouse.
In its enthusiasm, it found a way through a cracked lower window and staked a
claim. Bypassing the watering cans and shunning the badly used birdhouse, it seemed to
be on its way to the ceiling vents.
(My sons are building a practice frisbee golf basket and think the greenhouse is a great place for project storage.)
Intricate curls and modestly clasped buds -
The smallest round egg gourds are forming ...
... and developing everywhere in there.
Can you see the mildew spots on the lower leaves? It will eventually take the whole vine
down. You can spray to stop the mildew, and after cutting off the effected leaves,
there might be a chance of survival.
Some organic solutions described here which I've never tried. Seems like it might be
worth a shot when the plant is smaller, earlier in the season.
There's always next year!