Reflecting on this new farm life (with a side serve of beans and zucchini)

It’s Friday night here at the farm.  The post-sunset rowdiness of cicadas has faded to intermittent chirps.  With no city lights and no street lights, things get surprisingly dark out here.  Stars blink between the trees’ shadowy leaves as they move in the breeze.  Out in the house yard, sleepy chickens rest tucked up on their perches for the night, taking a break before the morning’s egg laying.  In the paddocks the cows are quietly content, not a moo between them.  All in all, life is pretty good.

I guess when you’re new to country life and just learning the ropes, things have a tendency to go wrong almost as much as they go right.  And I figure that’s ok.  Hang onto your sense of humour, let go of your ego and any illusion that you know exactly what you’re doing, and things’ll be just fine.  Ask questions.  Admit ignorance.  Keep learning.  And enjoy the little wins when they happen…

On that note, we’ve been having a few little wins lately with our first raised vegetable garden thundering along. The Blue Lake climbing beans are twining up the trellises like some relative of the beanstalk in that well-known fairytale.

Blue Lake Climbing Beans heading skyward up the (homemade) bamboo trellis
Blue Lake Climbing Beans heading skyward up the (homemade) bamboo trellis

The dwarf butterbeans are going equally well, smothered in tiny violet flowers and rapidly developing beans.

Immature butterbean developing on dwarf bean plant
Immature butterbean developing on dwarf bean plant

(*warning: the next paragraph contains the word ‘zucchini’ an obscene number of times 🙂 )

The zucchini plant is threatening to be just as productive as I feared; it’s already well over a metre wide with a stack of flowers and half-grown fruit.  I can almost hear my family’s sighs of relief that I’ve only grown one zucchini plant (zucchinis being notorious for overrunning households with their generous bounty of fruit).  In case of zucchini glut, the recipes are on standby: Zucchini slice, Zucchini salad, Zucchini fritters, Zucchini cake, grilled Zucchini, stuffed Zucchini, etc. etc.  My house may soon be filled with as much zucchini as this paragraph.  (Speaking of which, I still can’t type the word ‘Zucchini’ without the computer’s spellchecker throwing a wiggly red line under it – too many c’s and i’s to remember!)

Zucchini flower (with young zucchini fruit growing beneath)
Zucchini flower (with young zucchini fruit growing beneath)

Growing beans and zucchini might not exactly be rocket science, but it’s a pretty good start.  And, as a complete novice, I’ll take my wins where I can get them 🙂

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