Ah, July in the world of slow foods.
It brings me food for my table and food for my soul.
Every day lately I can walk outside and fill my arms with zucchini, tomatoes, herbs, eggs, cucumbers, eggplant, and blackberries.
The harvests are steady and plentiful, blemish free, delicious.
This summer has been a dream.
More rain I think than even the rain forest dares to dream of.
Hot, sunny afternoons that energize the plants and animals.
Cool evenings and mornings to relax them again.
Even the insects that normally make me a crazy person, well… No biggie. So many of them have drowned or just can’t keep up with the vitality.
The morning glory vines have taken over several spots in my herb garden and vegetable yard, but I don’t really care.
Who could argue with this color and form? How much is too much of this?
One of the best parts of each day is walking out early enough to see them still twisted in velvety little packages, only to see them later in the morning, spread open to the sun and boasting that deep, sexy hue.
And with a bumper crop of pumpkin, squash, and zuchinni vines, I have a plethora of gorgeous star-shaped blooms like this.
So many are dotting the compost heap that I am considering a meal of flash-fried squash blossoms.
To me this seems very Julia-Child-meets-Miranda-Lambert, and I groove that.
Lest I only show you close-up photos…
Here is a view of my Three Sisters patch, compost heap, and raised veggie beds, looking uphill from the bee hives.
You can see plenty of grass growing between it all, but that’s a good thing.
To me it means fertility and moisture.
The corn stalks will get serious before long, and the green beans are so close.
Beneath all of that thick, glossy life are buried fish heads, in keeping with the Native American tradition.
Ah, the bees. The Lazy W Honeymakers.
Because this summer is such a dream the bees have multiplied like Tribbles on Star Trek.
They are possibly outgrowing their hives already, and you can smell the golden treasure from quite a distance when the lid is tilted open.
Chances are good that we will be robbing honey soon.
And adding supers.
And counting every single sweet, sticky blessing.
The gardens. The bees. The chickens…
Mid-July is a spell and a climax all at once.
It heals me from the hurts of life and nourishes me in ways nothing else can.
In all of this I plainly see the hand of God and can relax. Trusting His timing, His mystery, His power.
This constant growth and harvest is everything I need to be reminded of the cycles and goodness of life.
He who grows a garden still his Eden keeps.