After a year of not planting any vegetables, we are putting in a new, small vegetable garden on the front lawn! I had been sure that we could live without it - that we would go to the local farmers’ markets and also buy fresh produce at our Co-op and so we wouldn’t miss having a garden at all. Well, it didn’t turn out that way. With a new puppy and the dear grandchildren we made it to only one market, where I unhappily paid $4 for a head of lettuce, and didn’t go grocery shopping nearly as often as I meant to. But most of all, we missed walking out the door and picking a tomato whenever we felt like it. We’ve been pondering all winter where to put the new garden. It just needed to be big enough to put in a few tomato plants, lettuce, parsley, basil, spinach, and yellow beans.
And then, voila! I got an idea, which gives us a garden area and solves a fencing/gate problem we’ve faced for several months. When Tom first began building our new fence in 2014, replacing the falling-down picket we’d had for many years, he put it in the same spot.
But then we began to think it might be nice to move it over toward the terrace so that any dogs we might have could go out the front door and be completely enclosed. So, he did it.
What we didn’t reckon into the equation was the Houdini dog we got last summer by the name of Lucy. She can open latches with ease. Tom tried different ideas to keep the gate shut to no avail until he came up with the idea of a carabiner.
Even Lucy cannot open it. In fact, I can barely open it, and therein lies the problem. It is a real drag to have to go through such a rigamarole just to get in and out of the yard. When Tom is trying to carry in a crate of fresh milk from the local farm, he must put the crate down, open the gate, pick it up, put it down inside the fence, lock the gate, and then go in the house. And the poor UPS and Fed Ex fellows have braved the carabiner with nary a complaint. We try to meet them so they don’t have to come in but sometimes we aren’t home.
The hassle of opening the gate was one problem. The other problem with Lucy in that part of the yard was that she was ruining my precious flower gardens that border the patio. This corner is where she stands to do her major job around here - that of being snoop dog.
Margaret, Matthew, and Hazel live just down the road, and she is worse than any neighbor peeking out through curtains or using a telescope. She watches for them. She gets all excited when they drive in their yard, or she hears their voices or their dogs barking. And of course tramples the flowers in the process. I ended up fencing them, but felt badly for her because she so enjoys her ‘work.’ I thought we’d just transplant the whole bed in the spring. But now I won’t have to. With our new plan, I get my garden back.
So, we are returning to the old way. Lucy will go out the kitchen door and have the freedom of most of the yard (which opens into a big field) and we will have the freedom of coming and going in the front door with no hindrances. The new garden will be right beside the patio. There will be a section of fence dividing it from the rest of the yard. It’s going to be wonderful, and we are so excited. I’ll post pictures as we move along on the project.