Since I’m not doing a whole lot of actual gardening these days due to heat and a tree having crushed my yard, I figured I’d post a few photos here that begin to explain where my gardening genetics come from:
That’s my mom’s dad hoisting me into one of the apple trees at the home of my dad’s parents. My maternal grandfather was an old-World gardener. In addition to regular food crops in his extensive gardens, he grafted fruit tree stocks to other trees. Typically he did this with apples, and I remember him having one apple tree with five varieties of apple on it.
Apparently it was all the rage to place the baby on a giant squash of some sort:
Both of those were also taken at the Opperman homestead, and the adults in the photos are my mom and grandfather. My dad’s dad had aspirations of being a big farmer through the 40s and 50s, though the world took a different direction as I understand it and food became an industrial product. Nevertheless, Grandpa O. had marvelous beds of flowers – zinnias, tiger lilies, chrysanthemums, peonies. He also grew corn (an extremely sweet white corn), many types of squash and melons, apples, and I remember a hazelnut tree in there, too.
As an aside, my parents visited the old Opperman homestead earlier this month, and my grandpa’s flowers are still in bloom next to the barn.