Saturday, June 20, 2009

Plantin' time

In late April and early May, Josh and Jax began preparing our vegetable garden. Here in south Mississippi, it is necessary to have a garden... not because we can't buy the vegetables in the grocery store like everyone else, but because having a garden sort of becomes a greeting in the summer time. A right of passage for summer. Like this: You see ole So-and-So at church and he shakes your hand and says, "How's yer garden coming?" During the summertime, it's no longer "hello, how are you doing?"! Instead, it's "How's your garden?"! LOL Most of you already know this because 85% of my whopping 9 readers live right down the road from me, ha ha, and the other 15% probably used to. Anyway, just a little clarification for one of you and a reminder for the rest. ha. I have digressed. Back to the post:
Jax has become quite the little farmer. He's interested in digging and planting, and especially likes watering and the tractor! ha. This year, he has helped with all aspects of the garden. Josh let him plant seeds in the garden and we also let him get some seedlings started with some small in-house pods. He could watch the process of the seeds becoming little bitty plants better with the pods and containers. He has a little shovel, rake, and hoe -oh, AND a wheelbarrow!-- for use in the big garden outside. And, he's not scared to use any of it one bit! It's amazing, but he's not scared of the dirt either. I know, amazing. ha.
Here's a few early pics of "planting". The garden is looking great and we've got a good bit of blooms and green stuff on the plants... so, very soon, I'll have some "harvesting" pics to share, too.

Every good farmer knows you must have good dirt (aka "soil") in order to raise good crops. For our container gardening, Jax was happy to be the dirt dispenser. This year, we also tried a Topsy Turvy Tomato planter. It looks interesting and promises to be easy, easy. Looks like this is leading up to a future product review. Stay tuned.

I like these little pods for starting seeds. They are small enough that the kids can't possibly screw up the seed-planting, and they are great to keep indoors for constant monitoring by the little eyes! The young'uns can really take full ownership of these, and get a little science lesson too, without even realizing it.

The seedlings usually sprout very quickly and you can almost see them grow before your eyes. That's always great for impatient toddlers. Here's some of our little seedlings, just before we transplanted them to larger containers and some to the big garden.

After transplanting the seedlings to containers, Jax gains a new chore: to water them when needed. This is no chore to Jax - he loves it and looks forward to it! MoMo bought him this really cool watering can, so that adds a lot of fun to the chore of watering the plants and flowers. This watering can is made by Fisher Price and there are some other contraptions made very similar to it that we would love to have, but haven't been able to get our hands on yet (a sprinkler, pail, etc). Parents just attach the base to the end of the water hose, and the kiddos can simply set their pail on top of it, and it fills up in just a few seconds flat. Next, just lift the pail off of the base, and get to watering. The base stays attached to the water hose, and keeps the water from leaking everywhere while the little legs chug all over the yard to water the plants and flowers. This little contraption is handy, economical, and fun - and, it requires virtually no parental assistance after attaching the base to the waterhose for them. Cool stuff! I have even been know to borrow it!
When Jax can type, I will have to get him to explain all of the tractor stuff. I really do not know what is going on here, but I do know they are preparing the garden spot. Jax can tell you what every lever, button, shift, and pedal does on a tractor... AND he can also tell you WHY those activities are necessary! Me, I just take the pics, ok?We don't have a huge farm, just a small garden - big enough for us and a little bit of sharing and maybe even some to put up for the winter. So, the planting (and picking) is all done by hand. Here, the seeds go in.... soon, I hope to have some pictures of the end product!

Jax will be so proud to gather some fresh vegetables. Usually, he's not much of a vegetable-eater, but since he had a hand in growing some this summer, I hope his attitude will change. We shall see.