Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Looking for the gardening catalogs

Yesterday's Britt-Arnhild's Blue Garden was about going to the garden centers, reading the seed catalogs, and starting to think about and designing this years garden.

Reading her Blog made me think about my father whose birthday would have been today. My father was a Pastor who always served in small country churches and who also had a rather large family to raise. Once the New Year arrived, dad would always look forward to the arrival of the seed catalogs. I think he viewed this, as a race to see which of his favorite seed companies would get their catalog to him first. I can remember as a young boy entering his study and seeing the stack of seed catalogs on his desk.

Soon the packages would begin arriving in the mail and dad would begin his yearly hobby of turning the basement and most of the southern facing windows into a greenhouse. As I mentioned, my parents weren't rich and had a large family to support, so Dad never had any of the fancy greenhouse products one saw in these catalogs. Rather, his was a collection of odds and ends. He built his own hotboxes and had a rather eclectic assortment of heaters and lights. Dad would ask us to bring the small, empty milk containers home from school so he could use them to start his seeds.

Soon there would be new plants starting all around the house. Later he would move all the seedlings outside during the day to begin the hardening process. Finally Dad would have all his flowers and vegetables out of the house and the yard and the rather large garden would no longer have that dead, barren look.

And every time Dad would move to a new church, he would carefully pack up his collection of plant starting items and his stack of old seed catalogs. Once at the new church, one of his first items of business would be find a place for his garden and the unpacking of his eclectic assortment of basement greenhouse items.


Blogger dot said...

Nice post. Enjoyed it! We get a few seed catalogs but end up going to the local feed store and walmart for seeds.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008 at 10:16:00 AM PST  
Blogger Britt-Arnhild said...

A beautiful post about your father and his love of gardening.
I will have both you and your father in my mind when I start my garden this year.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008 at 12:41:00 PM PST  
Blogger Boots said...

What he doesn't mention is that he inherited his father's love of gardening. He never had a garden as large as Grandpa did, but he got more produce out of less space than almost anyone else I know.

I remember him creating similar hothouses in most of the windows of the house growing up. Never anything as complex as his dad did, but always a garden.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008 at 1:32:00 PM PST  
Blogger Zaak said...

I enjoyed that post too. Something about the earth helps us connect with God too, so I can guess that your father had his finger on the pulse.

We had a garden until I was 7. Then we lived in houses without garden plots. I miss it a lot.

Thursday, February 14, 2008 at 12:54:00 PM PST  

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