May 5 – Nature Abhors A Vacuum

Don’t recall when I first heard this idiom, and should probably Google it to give proper credit to its author. However, it seems to repeat itself in my head as I weed. There may be an unsettling number of absolutes in the world, but I can attest to this one: I have been working Big Garden for going on 17 years; I am extremely fortunate that it is reclaimed farmland – from a generation that respected growing principles and not insecticides, so I have as close to friable soil as is possible in the area. As a result, I once thought we must be living on radioactive ground – my plants grew with an abandon I had never seen in a subdivision lot with disturbed topsoil and sodded grass covering the wages of building new homes. All would seem right in this new world – little need to add a ton of compost – just a bit for the sake of feeling like a good gardener, fertilizing with organic fish emulsion was novel at first but really unnecessary. Just maintain/add some mulch to keep in the moisture, weed as much as possible (and never enough) and enjoy it all once it gets to July. Plants seem to jump from the ground and weeds even more so. Since I am fall sinner, I must repent in the spring by weeding for weeks – fortunately, next to pruning, I find this to be the most therapeutic thing. iPod in place, now that the kids are old enough that I don’t have to "listen" constantly, I am in heaven for 30, 60, 90 minutes – whatever is needed by the plants or me… Bring on Nature!

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