I’m planning for the possibility that this is actually going to happen and I’m going to go to Uganda for 27 months next June. That means that instead of putting my winter garden to work for me, growing cover crops and piling on decomposing leaves to enrich the soil in preparation for the abundant growing seasons ahead (made less abundant, in summers, now, of course, due to ecosystem collapse and the almost total elimination of birds, bees, and butterflies where I live), I’m making different decisions.
Do I plant the garlic now, as usual, although this time I won’t be here to harvest it next June?
Do I try to keep the few remaining seasonal beds* in “holding patterns” while I’m gone, knowing there is no one here who will tend them, and that we plan to sell and move on when I return anyway and all anyone really wants in suburbia is knock-out roses?
Do I chop everything else — the fig trees, the bushes — down to their stumps in order to minimize the cost of maintenance needed?
Do I entertain the thought that after all these years of stewarding this land organically, chemicals are now inevitable if I’m not here to swing a machete and I don’t want the sheer fertility of this land to swallow our house whole?
Yesterday, as I sat in this red chair (pictured) after laying down more cardboard and spreading more straw and chopping more branches, I thought these thoughts.
And then, despite all this — the need to eliminate, the letting go, the leaving — I planted yet more seeds.
Because that’s what I do.
And I couldn’t help myself.
* I’ve been eliminating beds for a few years now, converting them to herbs as well as just empty space for our home’s future owners’ fire pit or playground someday.