Clark Hollow Ramblings: Hay today, hay tomorrow

Have you noticed how thick and lush the hay fields are this year? I noticed some windrows down near Massies Corner and some of them looked three feet high. Bob Day says the hay is so thick that he doesn’t have to weave the large hay baler back and forth to fill up the machine with a nice full bale of hay. All I know is if it gets any more plentiful, I’m going to have to use his hay baler on the front yard. I can almost hear the grass growing and there are things I would like to do besides mow grass.

Speaking of things to do, after such a marvelous growing season last year for the garden vegetables, it was almost too much to wish for another year like that, but so far all I can say is, so far, so good. We have had new beets twice, and they were so good. Admittedly, they were a little small, but they needed thinning, anyway. Yesterday, I saw new peas on the vines. Tonight I will have some of the small, flat ones on my salad.

The radishes were wonderful. I say “were” because they have already bolted and gone to seed. I’ll try a few more, but I doubt they will do much in the heat of summer. And it seems we have been eating lettuce three meals a day and it still got ahead of us.

I can never understand why my sweet corn gets so many suckers on it. I think the people who do such things have about eliminated them from field corn. I wish they would do something for the kind I like to eat. I pull them off.

My father told me that when he was a little boy, his first job was working in the corn field alongside his father. His dad would chop and hoe and hill up the corn. Dad’s job was to pull off the suckers. He told he made ten cents a day doing that. My father was born in 1903, so that job he was doing for ten cents a day would have been just about 100 years ago. I doubt I would have much luck trying to find somebody to do that job for ten cents today.

Right now, I think the prettiest thing in our garden is the potato patch. They are almost up to my waist, as green as poison and in full bloom. The potato bugs are still around, but I got off a preemptive strike early in the game, and they haven’t been too bad. I have found only one small batch of the tiny orange eggs on the underside of the leaves. I’m sure there are a few more, but they haven’t been too bad.

We have some nice looking stone head cabbage that is firming up, as well. Earlier, it looked like something was eating them, and I wanted to put some Sevin on them, but my bride used a little lime, and they seem to be coming along better. She cut two of them today. I can’t wait for that first batch of fresh coleslaw or some cooked cabbage seasoned with a little bacon grease. With a big chunk of cornbread and some butter, you can just about make it to the next meal.

In other news, I am going to try to help out the good people who are putting on the Vacation Bible School at Washington Baptist Church. I will be one of the volunteers helping with music. I am still wondering how the children of the “Wheels on the bus….” generation are going to react to “Froggy Went A’Courtin” and “Old Dan Tucker.” I will let you know how it goes.

I hope your garden is doing well, that your hay is thick and tall, and that you are doing even better. Until next time, take care, and God bless.

Richard Brady
About Richard Brady 150 Articles
Richard Brady was born and raised within sight of Rappahannock Peak, as was his father, grandfather, great-grandfather, great-great-grandfather, etc. He graduated from George Mason University and was employed for 35 years with various agencies of the federal government. He retired in 2001, and he and his wife, Linda, live in Flint Hill, Va.