Welcome to my zone 9a habitat garden near Houston, Texas.

Friday, July 29, 2011

"There ain't a tomato worth it!"

Did you see the recent story about country music legend Loretta Lynn's heat exhaustion?  It seems she was working in her garden when she was overcome by the heat and had to receive treatment.  Ultimately, she had to cancel a couple of her scheduled concerts because of the incident.  When she was asked for a comment about what had happened, she said she was going to have to stay out of her garden in the stifling heat because "there ain't a tomato worth it!"

It's very hard to keep a real gardener out of the garden, regardless of the weather conditions.  The pull to get out there and get doing what needs to be done - and there is always something that needs to be done - is almost irresistible, but we do have to practice a little common sense if we want to be available to garden on another day.  Part of that common sense is to stay out of the mid-day sun and heat.

Easier said than done sometimes.  My schedule is such that I sometimes do find myself outside at mid-day.  When that happens, though, I am very careful. Whatever work I do is done is brief increments of time, maybe 15-20 minutes.  I rest frequently and I drink gallons of water.  Also, the layout of my garden is such that I can do quite a lot of my work in the shade if I time it right.  It is amazing the difference that the shade from a big tree can make in the temperature on the ground.  It could well mean the difference between being able to function and being laid low by heat exhaustion.

As we continue to experience triple digit temperatures, we would do well to remember Loretta Lynn's words: "There ain't a tomato worth it!"  Don't overdo it and make yourself sick. Take care of yourself so that you can continue to take care of your garden.  Use a little caution and common sense and you'll still be around to garden another day.  

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