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Friday, August 1, 2014

My Costa Rica Rain Forest

My husband and I frequently threatened to run away to Costa Rica. Whether we do it because it's fun to have a fantasy or we do it to make the children whine, I can't say. Maybe both. Maybe neither.

Until we make good on the threat, though, I've grown my own inadvertent alternative in the backyard: A victory garden.

Tomatoes, squash, melons, peppers, snap beans, and okra jockey for space. Sweet potato vines trace paths around the feet of the currently producing plants. The cantaloupe have gotten huffy over the intrusion and threaten anarchy as they spill over the border.

Tomatoes and peppers ignore the chaos. My refrigerator is full. Though it's a sinful thing to admit, I'm almost happy when a critter beats me to the first bite. I'll regret that feeling come September.

Weeds weave their way in, around, through, among my vegetables. They're masters of deception. They're swift in the their overtake of property promised to other plants.

Alas, my victory garden has near been defeated. The crisp, clean rows of spring have morphed into an impenetrable web of foliage that resembles a Costa Rica rain forest. Finding my harvest is like spotting a sloth in a ceiba tree. It requires intense focus to see through the camouflage.

But patience pays off. Just because schools are starting back this month doesn't mean summer is over. I plan to cultivate my happy snarl until first freeze, escaping to it whenever the children whine.

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