Kiddos in the garden

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Today we planted the first half of our brand-new, and we hope very long-lasting, asparagus bed.

Who knew this would be an hours-long affair? We didn’t, and that’s why we didn’t even start until 4:30pm. The job involved loosening the soil in a two-foot-wide, 12-foot-long band, as near to one foot deep as we could make it:

What do you mean, "mow the lawn"?

Then we dug a narrow trench down the middle of that, made mounds of soil mixed with compost on the bottom, and sprinkled them with blood meal and bone meal for fertilizer. On top of each mound we placed one young asparagus plant, spreading out the roots, then filled in with the loosened soil.

Mr. Green Scene and I are both nursing blisters after this mattock-wielding adventure. A greater challenge than the digging itself, though, was incorporating our almost-crawling daughter in the task. 

What do you mean, "stay put"?

If you sit her in the middle of the blanket, she’s soon at the edge or beyond, eating dirt. Ants seem to find her, and she’s liable to tumble over and get stuck. Thus one parent must be on baby duty at all times. Needless to say, this is quite a change from the old days when we dug and weeded side by side until the job was done. And as sweet as it is to lie on the blanket and talk to Elsie about the flowers, it’s also a wee bit frustrating to watch your spouse hacking away at a project, wishing you could help.

It makes me wonder about all the parents (mostly mamas) the world over who combine agriculture and child care, and have for generations. How do they actually do it? Parents, how have you gardened with babies in tow? What about when they get older?

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