Florida Winter

November 19, 2011 § 3 Comments

Florida doesn’t have four seasons.  We have a “cool”  season (70’s to 80’s) from late October to February with a few unpredictable cold snaps, and then, we have blazing, swimming-through-the-air-it’s-so-humid weather the rest of the year. Doesn’t that sound lovely?

There is an upside, though: for most of the country, the winter’s too cold to grow anything, but here, the cold(ish) months are, in my opinion, the best time to grow vegetables.  There are less bugs, less fungus (from so much moisture), less sweatiness, and therefore more of a desire to be outside to actually TEND the garden!

Having said ALL of that (deep breath), here it is, November 19th, and our garden, after a summer of fungus, aphids, and, weeds on performance enhancing drugs, looks like this:

Yes, we’ve let it go for a few months. I keep trying to convince myself we are doing something good for the soil. You know, letting it lie fallow or something?  But, no. We’ve just been busy and unmotivated and sulking from all the meanness of a summer garden without pesticides in Florida.

But, last week, my girls, being so much more optimistic and hopeful than I will ever be, began the cool weather garden for us.  I vaguely remember them asking me if they could plant some seeds and me giving permission, advising them to use the compost as potting soil, and then telling them to plant what they wanted, but to, please, plant some lettuce seeds.  I also remember thinking they would do it wrong, that the plants wouldn’t grow, that it was mostly a fun, but, ultimately, fruitless way for them to spend 30 minutes.  Well, guess, what?  We have seedlings. And, yes, I’m a jerk.

We don’t know all of what was planted in that  short session due to a very vague (but SO cute) labeling system, but I know from looking at them that there are some peas, red leaf lettuce, and marigolds shooting up already.  So precious.  The shoots and the girls.

I was inspired by my girls’ venture and by those little seeds just shooting up, like they’d never heard of  my pessimism.  Or the fall of man.  Or the bugs that long to destroy them.  So, I decided to start seeds today.  And I’m feeling optimistic about their potential and about this Florida winter, with all it’s benefits.  May I keep the eyes to see.

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