My grandma, who will be 95 on her next birthday, is staying with us for two days. Something she always likes to do is take a walk through our gardens. The profusion of blooms always amazes her. She talks about how much things have grown and changed since the last time she saw them, even if it was just last week. Gardens are like that.
As we walked by the small corn patch, she exclaimed, "Look at that sweet corn! How tall it is!" Our son-in-law said the same thing over the weekend. They noticed it was taller than usual, and they would both know, having grown up on the farm and in the case of my grandma, making a living by farming.
While the old adage "knee high by the 4th of July" doesn't ring true for corn anymore, due to hybridization, our corn is still taller than normal this summer. It began tasseling out last week and just this morning, the bumblebees were doing their job of pollinating.
"If the corn is knee-high by the fourth of July,
It'll make corn, wet or dry."
I always feel like summer is half over by the time July 4th rolls around. Planting is done, growing is well under way, and maintenance is the order of the day. Somewhere along the line, we have switched from wishing this or that would hurry up and bloom to wishing things would slow down.
The wheat in the fields around us has turned that beautiful shade of golden yellow and it's being harvested as I type. The first of the trifecta is gone, and before we know it, the soybeans and corn will have gone the way of the wheat.
In reality, there's a lot of summer left. Hot summer. Just like the last two summers, I feel as if I've grown a tail as I drag the water hose around with me. Each year I vow to just let the plants duke it out with the dry weather, but then I see some of them looking wilty and I just have to quench their thirst. We really could use some rain.
This year, we've been asked by the Van Wert Master Gardeners to open our gardens to the public for their yearly garden tour in August. We aren't really doing anything differently because of it, although it did provide leverage as I "encouraged" Romie to build fencing around the pool equipment at the back of the pool house.
Until then, we will enjoy these salad days of summer, relishing in each new bloom as it appears and joins the rest of those that make up the color palette of the garden.