Sun Ra - Column for 5/16

Yard Update

Well, once again I'm not in the mood for political ranting, so I'll fall back on one of my column-filler mainstays: gardening.

This last weekend was another planting weekend, this time mostly for vegetables. I had previously added various new flowering plants, which I enumerated in an earlier column. The weekend prior I had added six cubic yards of mulch.

This time, the prior weekend was also a prep weekend; I mowed the lawns and rototilled the vegetable garden. Mowing the lawn was a massive undertaking inasmuch as it had not yet been mowed this year. This is partly because I was gone for the last two weekends in April, and partly because of Sears. You see, I bought the mower from Sears, so I took it there to be serviced after it stopped working.

They told me they'd have it ready in a month. Yeah, I was a bit displeased by that, but in the event, they called and declared it ready after a few weeks. So the morning of the day I was to fly to Austria, I got up early and swung by Sears to pick up the mower, enabling me to mow my lawn before it became a Congolese jungle.

Well, they'd lost it. The computer showed that I had, indeed, dropped my mower off to be serviced, but it had no idea what the status of the order was or, indeed, where the mower might be.

I had a plane to catch, so I threw up my hands and left. Thus, by the time I went to Sears the first weekend of May to successfully reclaim my mower, said Congolese jungle had materialized. The mowing of the various lawns took many hours that Saturday because the process consisted not of walking along with the mower in front of me, but rather of pushing the mower forward a few inches into the calf-high grass, listening to the engine whine drop to a low, struggling hum, waiting for it to spin back up, and pushing it forward a few more inches.

After that I rototilled. I like rototilling a lot; I have enough yard to justify it (since the alternative is essentially to turn it all over with a shovel) and have purchased myself a nice manly rear-tine push-tiller. It tears shit up. Pardon my French.

So that was the first weekend of May. Last weekend, then, I had a nice blank canvas of freshly turned soil in which to plant my acquisitions. What I went for this year:

Seedlings:

And I planted the following seeds:

I decided not to try corn this year as it failed pretty miserably last year. And I gave eggplant a pass, too - the plant did okay but the fruit rotted before I could harvest it. Same with the yellow squash.

So that's what's in the ground now. I'll be adding to it in drips and drabs as other things become available - I'm thinking here of more basil varieties especially - but the basic outlines are laid. Now it's mostly just a summer full of Darwinian fun, as some plants die and others prosper.

- Sun Ra

Columns by Sun Ra