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Learning to water

On Watering

Ah, the long days of summer. Now that it’s hot out you can let the sprinkler lose on your garden. Turn it up and let the kids play in it while you water the lawn! Our lawn usually has a green ring in the middle of it! The rest can turn gold, I’m fine either way.
Using soaker hoses for the vegetable garden is great. It keeps the the moisture off of the leaves of more sensitive plants; Zucchini, Squash, Tomatoes, Cucumber, and a list of others do not like wet leaves.
I like to use an oscillating type sprinkler. It allows me to water the veggie beds and the surrounding lawn and garden with any over spray. The amount of water that it puts out is small enough that it can be left for an hour or so without flooding or running off and large enough that the wind won’t blow it into mist. I don’t have many plants in the main veggie beds that are bothered by the overhead water. In contrast Chard, Lettuce, Beets, Peas and most of the ornamental plants seem to like the refreshing rinse.
My Tomatoes are under a plastic hoop house up against the side of my garage in containers. I have the plastic lifted full time at this point. Come the Fall rains, I can pull it down and continue to get tomatoes through Thanksgiving!

Tomato Hoop House

Oscillating Sprinkler

As with everything in the garden; watering is work and play, a learning experience, a tactile, kinesthetic, aesthetic, scientific and emotional experience. We engage with our environment by adding something that distinctly alters what it is and how it will be. It is not just a practice of watering a pot to keep something alive. We can learn that if we water to much around the pot the weeds will grow and harbor slugs in them. Once again I am brought to a great appreciation of our Western climate. Dry Summers that change the environment in a distinct way. When we work against that we see instant affects. I love working with the seasonal changes as much as possible however, a Garden is a diverse place and, done in a responsible way, it is a place of great wealth and education, experience and joy. Done in a passionate and educated way, a garden is our land, a place of magic and mystery, a place to be tended with love, respect and a strong intention.

A beautiful spirit laid exposed to our touch and fed by our sweat, tears and hearts bare; wounded by our rage and our fears yet always open, always changing, always there for us, shall we need it- this is the Garden.

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