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Thursday, July 23, 2009

I Want My Yard Back

This is the third year in a row that this has happened! I am getting more than a little tired of it.

Three years ago we took the local grandchildren to an apple orchard and besides apples we bought pumpkins: large ones and small miniatures, too. I told the children when their pumpkins began to go bad I wanted them for my composter. And, so we did. However, I decided to cut the pumpkins so the birds could reach the seeds and eat them.

The following spring here came pumpkin vines. The fruit was small so we had miniatures again. I repeated the process. Come spring AGAIN, (second spring) up came another vine. I did not write about it because Aunt Debbi wrote a fun post about hers that did the same thing. But, that was two summers we had to walk around a huge sprawling vine. They are fun to watch grow, but it was getting tiresome.

This spring (third spring) here came another vine. I do not remember the children giving me another pumpkin, but I guess they did. Here is what happened.

This spring one vine grew. OK, we thought, here comes another miniature pumpkin vine. "Miniature pumpkins" grew and grew. Obviously they were not miniature pumpkins. One of my helpers thought they were watermelons. So, I sent a message around to family members near and far that this year the pumpkins were watermelons.

Several days later, another helper looked at them and commented on the large size of the stems. He thought they were pumpkins. It wasn't long before the largest started turning orange.

Message sent around to family: The watermelons are pumpkins again.

When I was looking through some photographs from last year, I found the following missing link, and the mystery is solved!

I don't remember a crisis, but you know what Esther wrote about Americans and pumpkins.
(If you go there, be sure to read the comments below her story.)


keewee said...

I can see where the first year was fun, but after a couple of more years the novelty has worn off. I think I would be ripping them out of the ground.

Barbee' said...

If it happens again, I probably will. At least that is what I have been telling people.

Balisha said...

Hi pumpkin lady,
The little girl next door and i have been trying to grow mini pumpkins this year...they are doing very poorly. We planted in a pot...probably should have found some bare space in the yard...(is there such a thing?)

Jan (Thanks For 2 Day) said...

You could always start a produce stand selling pumpkins. Maybe even say the seeds are magical! I suppose you could run your lawn mower over them each week; at least they wouldn't develop into pumpkins. As for the vines, etc., perhaps you should dig them out, afterall!

CiNdEe said...

Cute story!!! I would love a pumpkin to carve...(-: Bet the grandkids love them!!

Aunt Debbi/kurts mom said...

Hey, What is my garden doing in your yard;)

Andrea said...

ahahaha! That is fantastic. I know I sholdn't be saying that but I think its great. I really do.

Barbee' said...

Hi to you, too, Balisha. I wish your joint pumpkin project was going better for you. That is such a good idea for doing with a little one. I was hoping I could tie this vine up on the wire fencing as it grew, but it was just too stiff to turn and train up. (I had read of people doing that with cucumbers.) Growing ends went every direction... even through the cage on top of the pile of leaves and out the other side. There is one pumpkin in there on top. It was too close to the wire and was going to grow around it, so I asked a helper to cut off the part coming out the other side, then move the heavy fruit back away from the wire into the center. There it grows.

Jan, I can see it now: advertising magical pumpkins that keep coming back! When it came up this year, there were two seedlings up against each other. I pulled the weaker one, so this one really took off and grew, even though it is cheek-to-jowl with the Anise Hyssop, and white half-runner string beans are growing all over it, and my seed radishes are blooming through it. Nature, and its force, is awing! Thank you for visiting and commenting.

Cindee, Thank you! These grandchildren have outgrown the jack-o-lantern carving stage, and only use them to decorate their front porch and steps for autumn. But, I can smell raw pumpkin just thinking about it. A long time ago, someone told me they were laughed at by a European because we eat pumpkins while they considered them not fit to eat, and feed theirs to the hogs. I wouldn't want to give up pumpkin pie and pumpkin bread.

Hello Debbi, I don't know, but I wish you would take it back! BTW, I have finally tracked down your relevant post, got the URL, and pasted a link to it. That was a cute post.

Andrea, I know what you mean. I laughed about the one in Debbi's garden, too. I don't know how many growing points this one has, but they have all been cut back at least once, some twice, and they keep going. I have found another female flower - couldn't bear to cut it off. Stood there and gave a biology lesson to some of the young men helpers, and furthered it by citing "Mr." Holly tree standing right beside us. Explained to them where the red berries come from. Honestly! Young people have never been taught about the birds and the bees. They have no idea where that saying comes from. It was the same with another one, and she is the mother of 4 much loved sons.

lynn'sgarden said...

LOL, Barbee!! That must be some GOOD compost! Just goes to show how determined that seed was to keep growing! It'll be fun to carve the kids names in as the fruit is young and it'll be imbedded in the skin as it matures...now THAT's magic..haha!

Barbee' said...

Lynn, I had never heard of doing that. What a fun idea!

Meadowview Thymes said...

I love it Barbee! I always wanted to grow a pumpkin, but I will just enjoy yours. Great story!

Barbee' said...

Hi M.Thymes, isn't that a trip! The young people working here have been intrigued, commenting about the size of the leaves, and the size of just one vine. I think there are 7 large fruits.

the inadvertent farmer said...

ROFL...I'm glad I'm not the only one who does things like this! Mystery veggies are always fun, Kim

Barbee' said...

Hi Kim, I think so, too, and you are definitely not the only one. My husband thinks I'm about half a bubble of plumb, anyway.

Kerri said...

I know just how you feel!
For years we had pumpkin and winter squash vines escaping from the veggie garden and creeping across the lawn. They make it very difficult to mow, don't they? I would turn the runners around, trying to get them to grow back into the garden, but no, they wanted to escape!
Then my hubby began planting them in an area further out from the lawn, beyond the rhubarb and strawberries, and that solved the problem. Now we have our very own pumpkin and squash patch for the grandsons, but we are lucky enough to have the room to do that.
This year with all the rain, we've had very poor germination, so there won't be many fruits, sad to say.
I've had such an interesting time tonight catching up with your blog. Long time, no read, so it was fun! :) Sorry to stay away so long. I've missed you!
Your daylilies are gorgeous, and your peonies were wonderful..and that tiny clematis...so sweet.
I hope you're well and enjoying your Kentucky summer.
Thanks for visiting and for the nice compliment on the photo :)

Barbee' said...

Kerri, I love the idea of having an area dedicated to these sprawling squash and pumpkin plants! How ideal! Fingers crossed in hopes you will have enough fruit set to make the children happy. Lucky children to have grandparents who live on a farm. I know farm life is not an easy, lazy life. I think you are doing well to keep up with it and your flowers, with an occasional post to let us know what is happening. Thank you for coming over for a visit. I loved hearing from you.

Avis said...

You'll be the most popular person on the block when Halloween rolls around ;-) Cheers!

Barbee' said...

I think the yard looks as if Halloween has come early!

Sue said...

So, that's how your pumpkins got planted! They did look like watermelons at one point, didn't they?!

I've had a variety of plants grow from seeds in the compost. I've gotten so I put anything with seeds in a pile alone, so if anything extra comes up, it will be in the pile. My husband forgets about that, though, so if he dumps a pot, it will be on the main pile.

Well, at this point, it looks like you won't have to buy pumpkins this fall.

Barbee' said...

Hi Sue, sure does look like that doesn't it. It is so much fun to have all these "free" plants in the compost piles. Today, I saw another little, bitty one growing out in the lawn. The mower will take care of that one for me.