We Have Tomatoes ♥, We Have Deer ♥, Crazy for Pho ♥, and In Search of a Great Book

Last night’s garden walk revealed tomatoes on the vines! Given the size of most of the tomatoes we found, we should have tomatoes for salads and sandwiches by mid-July - in about two weeks. I’m happily surprised, since spring was so cold and wet, and I didn’t expect to see ripe tomatoes until August. Fortifying the soil with as many minerals as we could and applying magnesium foliar sprays may be the reasons the garden is doing so well this season.

This weekend’s garden chores include securing climbing cucumber and watermelon vines to their trellises. As if overnight, both have become a wonderful jungle, but an unwieldy one. There’s nothing more frustrating than missing a perfect cucumber because it’s hidden in a wild nest of a mother plant, only to find it later - too big, tough, and seedy to eat. Ditto for tomatoes, which can get lost in a really robust tomato plant, then ripen and rot away.

My husband spotted deer tracks in our big food garden yesterday morning. My first reaction was to tense up and strategize. But then I reminded myself that:

Control is an illusion. So is separateness. Which means that:

I am the deer, and the deer is me: there is no ‘other’.
Everything that lives needs to eat.
We should offer up our food gardens to wildlife nations, as well as give garden food to neighbors, family, and friends.
There’s nothing - short of building moats around the food gardens - that I can do about it.

I checked the garden this morning. No signs of deer damage. But if they want to come in this summer and munch, they have my permission. Not that they need it.

Our awesome neighbor gave us more food from his garden last night. A bag of zucchini squash, yellow squash, and pickling cucumbers was delivered to our door. We steamed the squash for dinner and I made a rice vinegar and dill cucumber salad. More cucumber salad again for lunch today.

Now we’re into July. There’s a three-day weekend before us. It’s consistently hot outside and I’m loving it. Last night, I received delivery of a new porcelain Pho bowl, because I’m into Pho in a big way now. More on that in another post. This weekend, the weather forecast is great, and we’re taking out the boat.

All I need now is a great book. It’s been a while since I’ve read a book that I couldn’t put down. I’ll check the latest New York Times Book Reviews this afternoon. Sprawled out in the sun on a boat with a life-changing book to read? Right now, I can’t think of anything better.

Live in peace.

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