Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Sin(s) of Omission

Isn't a Sin of Omission something you should have done, and didn't? Well, I certainly committed some recently, and now I'm paying for it.

Background: Last fall, I finally prepared 3 long raised bed/rows in my garden, which took many passes through the weeds with the tiller. All the 'green manure' was piled up for spring when it would go into the compost pile. After raking the beds smooth, I planted 3 long rows of garlic in one bed and shallots in the other. Mulched them well with straw for winter. Patted myself on the back.

In early spring a light bulb went off, and I remembered the year before when all the straw sprouted and took over everything else in the garden while I was busy being sick. Determined for that not to happen again, I removed the straw mulch as soon as I thought the garlic and shallots would be okay without freezing, and planted 120 onion sets in the end of the shallot bed. When it warmed more, I transplanted a few purchased seedlings (mine hadn't sprouted yet) of swiss chard, broccoli and Brussels sprouts in the 3rd bed. Did I put down a (different) mulch? Nooooo... what a dummy! (Sin of Omission?)

Just before the creek flooded, I noticed a fine, thick, uniform covering of grass sprouts about one inch tall growing all over in those beds. (I presume from grass seed brought up by tilling. Duh.) I thought... "Well, they are so tiny they will be easy to hoe," and then it rained... and rained... and rained. When it finally stopped raining, I told myself it was too muddy to get in there and hoe (it was). I procrastinated for 4-5 days (another Sin of Omission?) and today I took my hoe to the garden.

Guess what? They are now too large to hoe; their roots go down 3-4 inches. The hoe merely chops off selective part of the tops. I know if I don't get them totally OUT, roots and all, they will not only choke out my veggies, they will reseed for next year and I shall forever be like Sisyphus, only with a hoe and not a rock. Sigh.

After putting the now-useless hoe away, I have been sitting on my arse pulling grass out, a square foot at a time. I should be finished by the Fourth of July.

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