May 16

It never ceases to amaze me at how entitled customers think  they are or perhaps it is the depth of their  lack of knowledge concerning things remotely horticultural.  This  years best story to date is about a customer who came in and bought some rhubarb roots that  were still dormant. The  pot  contained the dormant root, it was the 23rd  of April and there was no foliage yet showing.  I  heard his  somewhat indignant voice on the message  machine about a week later (May 4) saying that there was no  harvestable rhubarb yet and what were we going to do to make it  right. I think my wife politely informed him  that we would make it right if something turned out to be wrong with the  product, but that he should be a bit more patience.  This was probably the correct way to handle this…not the way I would have approached it had I called the indignant fellow back when I first heard  his message.

I understand that we are a society that has come to  expect to get everything we  want, and that  we want it now. Fast food, wide screen televison, hi speed internet–whatever.  Gardening demands a bit more patience and a bit of knowledge. As far as the knowledge goes,  a recent interview was done of us in a local paper, and one of the angles the reporter was charged with was  to get  simple steps to guarantee  success with heirloom tomatoes. I had to inform the reporter that in my neighborhood their were no gurantees to having a successful gardening experience  year in and year out.  If was all that easy to be successful in farming  wouldn’t I have a 2nd home in some exotic locale to which  I could fly my plane  after thirty five years in business?  I tried to give her a list of things that were important to do to be  susccessful with growing heirloom tomatoes,  but that phrase  –guarantee success”— seemed to smack of more of entitlement. The reporter got a story, I guess….probably just not the story the editor wanted.

Me, I currently feel that I am entitled to no more frost until fall  and I would like about an inch of good soaking rain in the  next 48 hours. It would surely simplify my life as it it is very dry and difficult to get things transplanted out  in these conditions.  Mike was harrowing up some ground yesterday and it was surprising how dusty it was. Last spring was  verymuch like this until the middle of June when  the rains came and took a month to go away. Hopefully we will not experience that again, but that would be  a better choice than to continue on thiis dry spell that we are on.  Not too far south of hear they are getting more than adaquate rainfall (Bellows Falls/ Brattleboro) and I have  a friend in Rhode Island whose back teeth are floating because of all the rain he is getting.  But despite  the dryness, the potatoes are bounding up out of the ground, looks like a good stand of 1st planted carrots and so far the deer have stayed out of the lettuce. Nobody’s sick or hurt and the machinery currently is running like a  Swiss watch.  And these are the signs of good things  that  we can take heart in.