First, you need some dirt.
Lots of it.
Then you need to give that dirt some love.
And while mum is helping Brother make a hole for the pepper plant, you sneakily take pictures of her. She only kept the one with her feet and the one with the tomato (Or is this the pepper?) in it.
Before you’re asked to do anything else, you run off while mum tries to take pictures of the finished projects while not grabbing unattractive shots of her car (virtually impossible).
Finally, in hopes of a prosperous crop of hot peppers, tomatoes, and herbs, you take a select few leaves from your plants down to the altar in the woods, praying that you’re blessed with vibrant and delicious things to eat.
Yesterday, E. and M. helped me plant my herbs and two veggie plants into their containers. I’ve only ever successfully grown a few squash before (and that was by pure luck), so I’ll be curious to see how this venture goes. Despite the bugginess (not even my homemade bug spray could hold back the pillaging hoard of black flies that is out right now), we enjoyed ourselves. The children loved sinking their hands into the dirt and filling the containers and picking which plants to plant next. We took our time and sniffed and tasted the different herbs, finding which ones were more sweet and which were more bitter. E. really loves the lemon balm and peppermint. Surprisingly, M. really loved the onion chives. I, personally, am a fan of the cilantro, but wouldn’t thumb my nose at any of them, really. Not picky.
E. was a wonderful help in identifying what we were planting each time, taking pride in the fact that she could easily read each label. M., not wanting to be left out, would ask me in a very quiet voice what a label said when it was his turn and then shout the name himself proudly before placing the plant in its new home.
I’m not sure that we’ll get around to planting much more this season, but if all goes well, then I will certainly be open to expanding next year. I’d love to do separate planters for herbs for tea, another for pizza (something I make a lot), and maybe another for chicken (another dish I seem to always be making). And, of course, in my dreams, I imagine that some day I’ll get around to planting rows and rows of vegetable and herb seedlings. Maybe in another year or two…or when I retire.