New year, new attempt to produce sweet potato
I like Jan. 1 - a whole new year ahead. Time to make some changes and time for New Year's resolutions. I usually make a lot of resolutions and keep at least a few. Sometimes I have to make the same one several years in a row and keep working on it.
The first one on my list this year is to spend more time in the garden. But this time it doesn't just mean my garden, I mean in any garden. Sort of a "stop and smell the roses" attitude.
Notice, too, that I didn't say working in the garden. Those of us who enjoying gardening probably don't consider it work. It is pleasure. We just want to find more time to enjoy that pleasure. That is what I am going to do try to do this year.
Sometimes getting back to gardening refers to getting back to basics. Back to nature and our connection with it. So this is the year to honor the natural, nurturing experience of going to the garden. I hope you'll join me!
Now an update on my July 24 column: I know you have all been sitting on the edge of your seat waiting to find out what happened with the sweet potato that I planted on June 20. In the column July 24, I described how well it was growing and that I was looking forward to making a sweet potato pie for Thanksgiving dinner.
I did make a sweet potato pie for Thanksgiving dinner, but the sweet potatoes came out of a can, not from my garden. I felt like it was too early to dig my sweet potatoes. I thought I'd wait until Christmas instead.
According to the chart, sweet potatoes should be planted from the end of March to the middle of May. So I was about a month late getting it planted, but it was well-rooted when I did get it in the ground. Still, I figured I'd leave them in a month longer - just to be sure. The plant still looked really fine. It had been a beautiful plant all summer long.
One lady had told me that where she was raised, they dug their sweet potatoes after the first frost. Well, I knew I couldn't wait for that event here.
So just before Christmas, I took a digger and went out to my garden with great expectations and lo and behold - NOTHING. I found not even one teeny-tiny start of a sweet potato. Crushed I was - big time!Now if you have had experience in this area and are sitting there laughing, tell me why I didn't get sweet potatoes.
Oh well, a gardener (or Gardner) does not get depressed. When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.
So I salvaged the very nice-looking vine and brought it in the house and put it in a couple of vases. Thought I'd at least have a little greenery for a few days and maybe - just maybe - I'd get some roots and could start over. Put a few flowers in with the greenery and very much enjoyed the arrangement for a week.
Guess what - I have roots! So here I go again. Wish me luck for next Thanksgiving!
Thought for the day: 'Gardens teach, gardens comfort, gardens make us grow." - Ted O'Neal
Ellen Gardner, a master gardener who writes this column for the Federated Garden Clubs of Yuma, can be reached at 343-4020 or firstname.lastname@example.org.