I spoke to my 81 year old mother on the phone yesterday. She and my dad, who is 86, live far away from us in Florida so I don't see them often. She was complaining how exhausted she was because for the past several days she'd been busy scrubbing her driveway. Scrubbing her driveway???? Ai ai ai!!! I can think of a million better ways to expend ones energy, but she is probably a product of her German upbringing and I'm sure her mother instilled that craziness in her. You could eat off her floor and feel comfortable about it.
My American grandmother on the other hand could have been featured on an episode of Hoarders. The few times we visited her when I was a child I remember the piles of stuff, taller than I was, that you had to steer through just to get to a useable chair in her house. It was utter chaos.
Why am I writing about this? Because as both a gardener and a housekeeper, I seem to have a constant battle going on between these two sets of genes that are warring in me. I like neat and tidy, but I leave bits of detritus in my wake wherever I go. It's been a lifelong struggle and I can't tell sometimes if I'm winning or losing it. I think in the garden I've moved a small step closer this year in the tidiness battle. I won't comment on the house part of the equation! However...
But on to something a bit more positive than my bad habits. I've enjoyed seeing some of the last of the trombocino doing its best to put out fruits. It is the only squash vine that's still alive and relatively strong.
It's forecast to get colder next week, but still no frost predictions. I still have kale, parsnips, carrots, green beans, arugula, bok choy, kohlrabi, Brussels sprouts growing well. My fall cabbages look like lace they were attacked so badly by cabbage worms. My bad for not covering them. I also dragged my feet planting out my fall lettuce seedlings, so they are quite tiny, but some are planted in window box planters and can be protected, so I may get some salad out of them yet.
I've begun the process of getting things ready for winter by pulling out two of the green bean patches and some of the dead tomato plants. As various beds open up I've been bringing in cartfuls of compost to build up the soil for next year. And in the process, bit by bit I'm picking up after myself a little. Let the battle of the twisted genes begin again!