September 02, 2004
My Father's Vegetable Garden

All this talk about fresh fruit farms and vegetable gardens makes me think back about the garden of my childhood. My father grew up farming and picking cotton in South Carolina. His time in Japan during WWII influenced his plant choices in our suburban garden.

His true passion was his vegetable garden. It started out modestly enough, but expanded every year as he experimented beyond tomatoes and peppers. By the time I was in high school, the entire side yard (which was quite expansive) had been usurped in pursuit of vegetables.

Along with the outward expansion of the garden came an upward expansion consisting of pea vines, bean poles and corn stalks. Every evening after work, my father would disappear behind these layered curtains of foliage and it was my job to hunt him down for dinner. The day I caught him grazing freely in among the beans and peas, I realized why we never had a decent enough harvest of these to accompany our meat and potatoes.

Today, I have a better appreciation for the green tranquility of his creation. Nothing replaces the satisfaction of fresh produce grown in my own garden. It reinforces my belief that consuming the freshest food possible not only supports our health but feeds the soul and buoys the spirit.

Posted by linda on September 02, 2004

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