El Gringoqueño

All a man needs out of life is a place to sit ‘n’ spit in the fire.

Category: Gardening

Some Recent Photos

Totally accidental latte art. It looks like stylized logo graffiti that one sees on the streets of Puerto Rico.

Totally accidental latte art. It looks like stylized logo graffiti that one sees on the streets of Puerto Rico.

Pumpkin from my latest harvest. Nice deep beautiful orange.

Pumpkin from my latest harvest. Nice deep beautiful orange.

Always nice to kick back with the wife and a 40. Class it up with a wine glass. "Colt 45, it works every time."

Always nice to kick back with the wife and a nice 40. Class it up with a wine glass. Colt 45, works every time.

In the Weeds

It’s been a rainy couple of weeks as passing Caribbean instabilities have dumped buckets of water on us, over twelve inches worth.

In that time, it’s difficult to get to my garden, but today, I finally was able to survey the damage. Sigh, it was as I thought, weeds everywhere, choking off my Genovese basil, Puerto Rican cilantro, peppers, and pumpkin squash.

Creeping vines had reached up and entwined the delicate basil, pulling them down until they were nearly horizontal. It is hard sometimes to see the weeds, because they wrap themselves so completely, disguising and supplanting the foliage along the way to match the victim.

I donned army boots, old jeans, a workshirt, and a pair of gloves and waded into the tangled mess. It’s frustrating trying to grow anything because the weeds are so prolific. They reach up and snatch whatever I try to plant, and whatever I plant seems just to yield in the face of assault. Better to give up trying and just die.

I began pulling out the viney weeds first, coaxing and wiggling the tendrils loose and then lifting the mass up and over.

In the midst of the mess, all that can be done is to protect yourself the best you can from the molesting bugs, the wet dirt, and the prickly weeds and begin pulling one by one. I sat down in the shade and the mud and attacked first a little corner, a small patch of mixed basil and cilantro. As I brushed by my plants I was rewarded with the most delicious aroma.  Man, if I could only bottle this stuff as perfume. Oh my God, it was a beautiful smell.

Bit by bit, the morivivi, a thorny irritating weed, the creeping vines and assorted grasses gave way and I began to see my plants again. I will have to see if the basil will survive, though. They are delicate and took the harshest beating. The peppers fared a better, but after pulling the creeping vines from them I saw they had hardly any of their own leaves.

The Puerto Rican cilantro fared the best, its leaves standing big and strong and green.

Go little Bumblebee GO!

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Every day when I go out to check my zucchini for fruit, this big noisy bumblebee comes abuzz buzzing over. He sounds like an Army helicopter. I don’t know if he’s angry or what, but he buzzes me every day. A couple of days ago, I finally saw him crawling in and out of the flowers, and now I have some fruit. Great work little guy!

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Another. If I remember correctly these things grow to edible size in a day or so. Can’t wait.

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Lots and lots of fruit are growing all over these tomato plants which are nearly 6 feet tall. Two cherry tomatoes and one beefsteak.

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This is one of Laura’s favorite things. After a delicious batch of French press coffee, we get these interesting designs in the grounds. You almost hate to wash the cup, they look so cool.

Basil Forest

I have been toiling in my garden, mostly struggling, that is planting things and watching them die. I got sick and tired of fighting the weeds, the fungus, the sun, and I made a decision. If I would have weeds, let them be weeds I can eat, so I took the flowers of my basil dried them, and then scattered the tiny little black dots where ever they would fall.

I had had enough; to hell with you, garden. I had given up and was willing to try anything. And like having women throw themselves at you when you are taken, the damn things decided to grow. It’s like the things you want to grow know you want them to grow and don’t, and when you don’t care they seem to beg for your affections. That’s it, I don’t care about you either, you tomatoes, you corn, you zucchini. I don’t care about any of you. Are you buying this? Damn, I just jinxed it.

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