How it Started

When I was 12, I found a blank ledger book. It was a treasure beyond treasure to me. I debated and debated about what to do with it - it had to be something special. Finally I decided to make a list of things I wanted to do and places I wanted to see in my life and then cross them off when I had accomplished them. At first they were simple things, but soon I was adding dramatic things, impossible things, but things still worth dreaming about. Oddly enough, putting them on the list somehow made them attainable. I have kept the book and updated the list my entire life. Here is the story behind some of the entries - successes and failures, embarrassing and proud moments, laughter and tears - the ridiculous to the sublime!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Have a Greenhouse - DID IT

The ultimate gardening tool is the greenhouse.  I love puttering around in mine in the late winter when it's cold outside, but inside is warm and humid.  It feels like I'm visiting a jungle oasis.  It smells like damp dirt and if I'm lucky, plants and seedlings are sprouting everywhere.  I grow lettuce in there almost year-round.  It is probably the most expensive lettuce ever eaten if you consider the cost of electricity to keep the place warm, but it is delicious.

This year I started heirloom tomatoes and tri-colored cherry tomatoes, lemon cucumbers, basil, cilantro, dwarf dahlias, miniature zinnias, sunflowers, and cantaloupe.  I try cantaloupe every year, but have never coaxed one to an edible state - not for lack of trying.

Miniature roses, begonia bulbs, and fuchsia baskets fill the rows of shelves along with containers filled with mixed plantings of colorful annuals. The large pots of basil are usually the last greenhouse resident to get moved outside, they love the heat and are not fond of cool evenings.

 Years ago I had a small business selling vegie seedlings at the local farmer's market.  My greenhouse was called The Fern Factory.  One day I got a letter from Publisher's Clearinghouse informing Ms. Fern Factory that she could be a winner.  "Yes, Fern, you could be our next millionaire."  It never happened for poor Fern!

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