Summertime Means Watermelons

Food & Drink, Kitchen Gardening, Nature, Photography

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This year, we must have done something right, watermelon-wise, because they are sprawling everywhere, snatching onto every available hold with their super-strong tendrils. A good portion of the plants have overgrown the raised beds, which means I have to watch my step, lest I step on something like that pictured above. And below.

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It’s like I went outside one day and suddenly discovered all these green globes hiding under the mass of leaves. Who knows how long they’ve been there. Or did they appear overnight? Thankfully they haven’t been stolen yet (knock on wood), but I’m keeping a close watch. And I’m grateful for the ones that are staying in, or at least near, their designated growing area, behind the electric fence.

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Watermelons, as I’ve noted previously, always remind me of my father, and I’ve been thinking of him, anyway, given that Father’s Day was last weekend. These are Sugar Baby melons, and not descendants of the ones he raised, but I can’t help imagining phone calls with him where I describe them and ask for tips on telling when they’re ripe. It’s a little crazy that I started getting all earthy and into farming and ranching at the very end of his life.

I often wonder what gardening and chicken-keeping wisdom he’d share with me — not that I’d necessarily be taking his advice. I’m not nostalgic enough to start imagining that he and I would agree on much. Thankfully, we concurred on a lot of the important things.

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