Monday, March 16, 2009

Garden Diary: Springtime Cometh

Spring is less than a week away, but here in Southern California, things grow all year long--especially weeds. We have what is called a Mediterranean climate, which means that it is relatively hot and dry, but the radical swings in temperature are moderated by our proximity to the Pacific Ocean.

Our house is very close to the ocean, so our weather is a little more damp throughout the year, and during the winter, things can get downright chilly. Certainly it is nothing compared to those of who suffer through hard winters, but for us, it is cold. Our average low temperature in winter is about 48 degrees Fahrenheit (9 degrees Celsius). Add to that the cold winds that blow in from the ocean and generally overcast skies or fog, and I usually stay indoors most of the time.

That means my garden is neglected, and by the time the winter rains have gone and spring arrives, my back yard looks something like this:

Two weekends ago, the weeds were a lot thicker and greener, so I hit them with a popular herbicide called Roundup. It is fairly safe, but please don't tell my organic gardening friends! I have also been trimming the olive tree and bananas. That little olive tree is one of my favorite features of the yard.

During the heat of the summer, I can usually be found in one of these two chairs (depending on where the sun is at the moment) reading a book from the local library and drinking a beer. Life is good.

We live in a house owned by my employer, and we live here rent free as a part of my compensation. Otherwise, we couldn't afford to live in a house and would be in an apartment somewhere. Plus, if anything needs repair, it's not our responsibility. Someone else picks up the bill.

Since the summer heat won't hit us until July, I'll probably put in some cool season crops like kale, broccoli or lettuce. In a few weeks, I hope I'll be able to show off some pictures of neat, clean rows of new plants. Or, the yard will look exactly like it does today. It all depends upon how many zombies need to be killed.


kcinnova said...

A house with a garden is indeed a wonderful thing! (I won't tell anyone about the Roundup!)

Cate Subrosa said...

We are in the market for a house with a garden right now. I can't wait to get in there so I can start growing my own veg.