Temperatures have been holding steady in the high-80s to low-90s for a couple of weeks now, and there is no end in sight--very unusual for western North Carolina. We're all a bit peaked and many plants that usually bloom all summer (foxglove, valerian) are fried.
Summer Solstice was on Monday, and yesterday I took most of the spring peas off of their trellises (one of many wheelbarrow-fulls pictured above) to allow the cucumbers to bust a move. It felt like a fitting garden transition for Solstice time.
It's summer for sure now. Squash. Cucumbers. Green tomatoes and peppers on the vine. Wilting, bitter lettuce. Browning peas. Blown-out arugula and mustard all gone to seed.
I'm learning how not to hang on too tightly to the things in the garden that have slowed their production or passed their peak. It's such a straightforward lesson from the garden, one that lends itself so easily to allegory: the things we can't let go of start to taste bitter and feel tough in our mouths. Time to sweep out the old and allow room for what's next. In this case: cucumbers.