When my girls were little it was always a summer tradition for each of them to plant a plant in their poppy’s garden. What a wonderful way to introduce children to the world of gardening. Having grown up surrounded by beautiful gardens and bountiful fruit trees I naturally want to grow things and am intrigued by the beauty and the process of growth and the harvest.

My pop pop had a nice garden, tons of fruit trees, and grape vines that covered an entire patio. We lived next door, our yards connected by a little stone sidewalk. My grandmother’s parents lived next door to her before I came along. A great aunt and uncle used to live in the house that my parents have now. When there would be a wedding in my grandmother’s family, the reception would be held out back in the three connecting  yards. I can just imagine the scope of the celebration. I bet very Italian and very traditional.

My grammie no longer lives next door, but I still have the memories. I also had a great aunt and uncle who lived across the street, who had no children of their own, and again, a beautiful garden, fruit trees and grapes. I was there often, helped pick vegetables, and learned to clean and process them. I can still remember playfully competing with my uncle about who had the most peas in the pod they were shelling or who had the largest pea in their pod.

Yes, I grew up around gardens, a close-knit family, good food and much, much tradition. I have a lot to be thankful for.

I hope to carry on the tradition. I hope to someday have a garden that is as bountiful as my dad’s. I posted a few of these pictures earlier. Here’s what I hope to aspire to some day soon.

Big, beautiful healthy plants. Tons of good food and memories.

What kind of memories are you making?