Let It Grow Organic Gardens

And I resumed the struggle. -Vladimir

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Drip Drip Drip

This is not a story about global warming. This is a story about the sound of water droplets falling from a greenhouse table, steadily and rhythmically, onto the landscape fabric that covers the ground below.
The greenhouse needs to be watered every day. Okay, not every day. It just feels that way. That day is approaching, though. Quickly. As quick, in fact, as the planet spins around the sun. And since I’ve watered it, up until now, when I’ve felt like it, say, once a month, or after a long succession of sunny days, or when I've wanted to, its needing daily care, constant attention and regular watering now is a turning point, one giant leap toward the need for daily watering. That’s when it gets hot.
It’s snuck up on me, I admit. In my mind, it’s still winter. (There’s a fire in the woodstove now; I’ll probably have to drip the faucets on Saturday.) And in winter, you don’t water things.
Well, you do. The sun goes through the plastic and gets stuck in the greenhouse and bounces back and forth against the walls and passes over the plants like a gazillion times. And they dry out. I was in there just today, starting some lettuce seeds. I examined a few of the perennial herbs that have been sitting placidly since I deposited them there in late fall, and the soil was dry.
In February?
But no, I watered these last, like, two weeks ago….
The days are getting longer, and the sun is getting brighter, and the cold is getting hotter.
I turned the main valve up at the well. (The lines have to be shut off and drained, ‘cause they’ll freeze. Yes: freeze. ‘Cause it’s winter.) The hoses filled up, and I grabbed the spray wand and let the water fall on the long line of plastic trays. I gave them a good soak, and watered in the freshly seeded lettuces.
There was a sound as I walked through the greenhouse. A sound that carried me to another time and place, though I could not see where. I listened. There was a madeleine on my tongue, but I did not know what reminiscences I was supposed to have.
It came to me, of course. It was the drip drip drip of the water as it drained through the plant roots and the potting mix, as it pooled on the bottom of the flat, as it overflowed the little ridges on the perforated bottom, and fell, and fell, until it hit the ground with its rhythmic plot plot plot, out of a hundred flats. A hundred drips out of each of those hundred flats, ten thousand rhythmic plot plot plots on the greenhouse floor.
That’s the sound of summer.


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