Texas Gardens: Austin

I love flowers. I love homegrown tomatoes. I love to watch plants grow.

I’d love to garden.

But, although I’m descended from generations of farmers, and I spent most of my life amidst plowing and planting and combining and ginning, I don’t have a clue.

I don’t know when to plant. I don’t even think about planting until the growing season is half over.

If I happen to plant a seed timely, unbounded enthusiasm drives me to cultivate an acre when I should have stopped at a window box.

When they handed out garden sense, I was busy reading.

But hope springs eternal.

I now live in an apartment in the city. Outside the door, surrounded by concrete, is a small plot of earth. This spring, after six years of contemplation, I decided I might be able to handle it.

In April I bought a pot and potting soil at Home Depot and a half-dozen pink begonias at Wal-mart. I then proceeded to garden.

After three months–thanks to a husband who remembers to water them when I don’t–they’re alive, they’re taller than they were when I set them out, and they’re managing to stay upright in triple-digit heat.

They’re bright. They’re cheerful. They give me a feeling of accomplishment. 

One of the apartment complex cats keeps digging out one side, but I brush the soil back and go on with life.


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