While I was at the garden this morning, doing surgery on the soaker hose (2X more holes now), a handsome, boxy 5-ft-5 grandmother, maybe in her early 70s, came over with her 2-year-old grandkid (or was it great-grandkid?) to admire the garden.
We connected quickly. She pointed around the place, calling off all the veggies she had growing in her own garden. Then, hand out level with her shoulder, she said in a thick eastern European accent: “My tomatoes are much taller; they’re cherries; and they produce lots.” Then she smiled.
I thought, "This lady knows tomatoes," and told her that some of mine at home were still only 4 to 5 inches high.
Then the gentle, between-friends scold began.
“Why haven’t you picked those yet?” she said, pointing to the collard greens. “Another week and those leaves will be hard. You don’t want that."
"You’ve got to pick them now," she said. "Boil them first, then fry them with a little olive oil. They will taste very good.”
“But do it now,” she repeated, poking the air before me with her finger. “Don’t let them get hard.”
I promised I’d pass her admonitions on to the crew tomorrow evening, when we get together for our mid-week shift.