The Gibson family farm has been in our family since 1906. It has been a fully functioning farm the whole time. My Grandfather and Great-Grandfather grew mostly canola and durum, and for the past ten years my father has been raising sheep. Our farm is located in the south-west corner of Saskatchewan. I grew up mostly in the city of Saskatoon, spending my summers out at the farm. You could say I have a bit of farm-kid in me. The farm spans for hundreds of acres around the farmhouse, but the garden is just down a path through the yard. This is where the magic happens...
3 weeks ago, I chose my seeds. Carefully. I tried not to go overboard as I tend to do any time a Master card is involved, so I just bought the essentials. Peas, beans, corn, beets, carrots ( three different colours... that’s right, you can buy different coloured carrots) onions, tomatoes and three different kinds of potatoes... red, gold and Russian blue. And lettuce. And garlic. Oh ya, and chillies.
I took them home, and carefully planted my heirloom tomatoes, and peas and beans in those little compostable pots that decompose in the garden. My dad laughed at me for starting peas and beans in the house, because they should be sown directly into the garden. But I just wanted a head start. It’s bloody cold in this province, and I want a steady income of peas, damnit.
Now, 3 weeks later my peas and beans have skyrocketed... they are almost too big for their pots now, but it’s too early to plant them outside. Which is what my dad claims he knew would happen. So what? I still have lots of seeds left, and I can still salvage my teenage plants, I think. They just got over-excited at the prospect of getting out there and planted in their rightful place in the garden.
My tomatoes, that’s another story. As I said, I planted an heirloom variety, a veritable rainbow of tomatoes ranging from yellow all the way to purple. The picture on the seed package shows a shining family of brilliant colours, plump and juicy on their thick green vines. I look at my seedlings. They aren’t complete failures as much as maybe just shy; there are little pale green stems with baby leaves poking out of my pots. In an uncharacteristic gesture of encouragement, my dad says this is normal, and they will in fact grow up to be big and healthy. But is it normal? They look like premature babies. I’ve always bought my tomatoes as plants from a greenhouse, so I don’t really know. I guess we’ll see...I’ll cross my fingers and say a little prayer for my preemies.  

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