Death by Gardening

Local gardening guru, Don Burnett, is scheduled to come next week to help me with my major garden project.  So, in preparation, I decided I’d better get out in the yard and try to spruce it up a bit.  I was thinking that if he arrives and the yard is a hell hole, he will discourage me as he’ll think if I can’t even keep the yard clean, then how can I do a whole vegetable garden?

Yesterday, I took five wheelbarrows full of pine needles out of the lower yard, which is the designated new vegetable garden area.  However, that is a drop in the bucket, as I can see each pine tree has about 25 wheelbarrows of pine needles underneath it.  Doing this also helped me see that the project is likely doomed without some kind of decent path.  Right now one has to follow the dogs’ trail up the hill, pushing a laden wheelbarrow over bunch grass and uneven ground.

Oh well.  Once a few thousand dollars have been spent on earth-moving equipment, I’m sure all will be well.  In the meantime, I bought bags of dahlia bulbs at Costco.  God knows one can’t have just vegetables in the lower yard as that would be much too drab.  What a waste of good soil and water as well!  This way I’ll have vegetables decorated by colourful blooms.  So much better.

I’ve had the headiest week for the fruitcake business.  I contacted some more store managers to get feedback on how my product had done.  The nice man at Pepper’s Foods in Victoria, the woman at Cookbook Cooks in Calgary, and the manager of the Osoyoos Buy-Low all reported good sales and said they were certainly going to be ordering again.  I now have a nice tidy little base of stores, and if I can grow the on-line sales, I will be all set.

Miraculously, I’ve found that I’m able to force myself to do preparatory work for the baking.  I’ve been chopping chocolate and putting it into baggies, cutting up pears and apples, cutting parchment paper for the bottom of the tins, and ordering labels and bags.  When I see any of my ingredients on sale I buy them, and I’ll continue this throughout the year.  Despite all of this, however, I remain unable to force myself to bake.

This list of things I refuse to do grows large – baking, cleaning, writing my novel.  The things I continue to do maniacally remain the same – shopping, going to the gym, gardening.  If only one could make money from the latter.  Who knows, maybe the grand gardening project will flourish into something and I’ll become the Arugula Queen.

The dogs and I are completely exhausted from five hours of gardening.  As Luke was here I had him help me haul even more wheelbarrows full of pine needles up from the lower yard.  I then dug around in some of my beds, and generally worked until my back gave out entirely.  Quite a lot of fun, when you think of Ontario and Quebec, which are currently receiving 30 to 50 cm of snow!

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