I spent a lot of time as a kid with my maternal grandmother. At almost 90 years old now, she was a newlywed at the height of The Great Depression. “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” is a way of being, not a slogan, for her – saving scraps of fabric and cereal box liner bags, washing and reusing disposable dishes and plastic cutlery. Preparing for the “what-ifs” in life. Over-preparing, usually.
There are times when I am acutely aware of how much this rubbed off on me. Like last night, for example. I finally got to start some seeds. My experiment this year is to see if I can run a hypothetical CSA*. I’m going to plant as if I have a 2-member CSA, plus my own family to feed and freezer to stock. I may even find 2 people willing to be guinea pigs and buy my 2 weekly boxes.
So, plan in hand, I started in with the seeds. I had calculated how many plants I wanted to end up with in the garden, and therefore how many seeds to start. In most cases fewer seeds to start than what came in the seed packet. It about killed me not to plant the extra seeds. There’s no such thing as over-prepared. If The Great Depression II hits this summer, I’ll be sorry.
Just work the plan, I kept telling myself.
I seeded twice as many seeds as I want to transplant out, 2 per cell. That means after they germinate I’ll have to snip off one out of each cell (unless one fails to germinate). This will also about kill me. They’ve only just gotten a start at life and here I come, all Grim Reaper with my scissors, and just like that it’s over for them. These are the beginnings of food we’re talking about here. I’ll be really really sorry when The Great Depression II hits.
Just work the plan.
I did it. I stuck to my plan. I resisted the urge to overdo. No 300 tomato transplants for me this year.
Well, I started 12 cabbage instead of 11 because I don’t like odd numbers. But close enough.
After all, how can I tell what works if I don’t at least start with the plan? I work the plan this year. Analyze what went right, what went wrong, and what adjustments I had to make on-the-fly. Adjust the plan next year and work it again. Penny should be proud. If I learn nothing else in her class, at least I’ve learned to make a plan and work it.