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  • Writer's pictureEllen Harris

June 2023, It’s Been Real

Hello there.

June is closing out with a boom and a bang! It’s hot as hell in more ways than one. Reeling from but not surprised by the Supreme Court decision yesterday on affirmative action. Have to stay ever vigilant during these challenging times and nurture self and community the best we can. My garden feeds my body, mind and spirit even in this heat metaphorically and for real.


Calvin, my garden whisperer, started the weekend off with a bang. Saturday afternoon while weed whacking, he hit a piece of gravel that hurled itself into my yoga pavilion door, which crashed into a gazillion little pieces. Goodness I was upset. However, I breathed deeply and covered the door after he cleaned up all the glass. After all, I’m the one that had the brilliant idea to place gravel in front of the pavilion. Who knew that weeds are insidious and could care less if you placed landscape fabric down first to keep them away.

Sunday morning, I found two beautiful zucchinis growing nicely. Burgundy okra is slowly beginning to produce. Harvest included 4 cucumbers, 3 Clemson okra and 1 little tomato. Baby melons looking good. Volunteer Bok choi (named as such because it came up from seeds planted last year), microgreens and eggplant hanging in there. Sweet potato vines are growing wild, but no flowers yet, which tells me no potatoes yet.

By Sunday evening a crazy thunderstorm blew in ferociously with wind, thunder, and lightning throughout the night. At one point I jumped after hearing a muffled thud. I looked outside and saw what looked like a big tree limb in my front yard but knew better to wait until morning to investigate. My ancestor space was disturbed. Gratefully, the tree break was up top. Any lower, it might have hit the house. My frog sea-saw garden piece was cock-eyed and askew. But amazingly my balanced rocks and the name placeholders for my maternal/paternal mothers were not damaged.

The garden space and the rest of the yard, also, was not touched.

By Tuesday, there was calm at my homeplace. Melons and eggplant continued to grow. Biggest harvest to date this season was received; a zucchini, a couple of Thai hot peppers, a few okra, lots of cucumbers, mixed microgreens that I’d let grow beyond micro, and volunteer Bok choi.

Took my little bounty into the house. Added okra to others previously collected. Cut and cleaned them up along with the greens. Sauteed the okra, seasonings to taste, and Thai pepper a bit. Added cut up greens. Created one of my cook what you got dishes; simple and delish.

Wednesday’s harvest yielded my second zucchini, more okra and cucumbers. And from this picture you can see in the background that the yoga pavilion door was repaired. Gifted many of my cucumbers to a neighbor because I have way more than I can eat.

Today the melon vines are spreading like crazy. Collected the third zucchini, more cucumbers and okra. Even discovered a second baby watermelon.

Half the year is gone and I’m grateful to be happy. Wish the same for you.


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