Our First Garden Saga: The case of the missing zucchini

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Every gardener has experienced the despair when their prized vegetable is just about ready to pick when something devastating happens like it goes missing, the bugs finally found it, an animal took a great big chomp out of it. 

That feeling of total sadness sweeps over your body that ‘how could this have happened’ to my rare breed zucchini that finally has a vegetable on it after such a fail over the summer months. The hope inside is excited to finally taste the labour of love that has poured over the plant for the past two months. 

And gone!

The zucchini goes missing. 

Sunday morning we went to the garden to check on our little patch and do a little foliage spray before heading to the beach. We had spied some veggies that were perfect for the picking, we had planned to cook up a roast chicken with garden veggies for dinner for grandad who lives next door. It was going to be a celebratory harvest extravaganza, we had spoken about it for days. 

That afternoon we went back to do our usual water and garden harvest for dinner to discover our prime zucchini had gone missing. The kids were gutted and confused as to how this could have happened since we all checked in on it in the morning to see if it had grown overnight as I watered it extra loads to make sure it would be ready. 

In my stomach, I knew there was foul play at hand. How could someone do this! And WHY?

The evidence led me to believe that this was a human job. And it was the second time that one single veggie had magically just disappeared in the last week. 

No munch and crunch evidence, no digging just a clean tear that was fresh.

Roy had been putting so much love and effort into the garden these past few months, I just go down and water, fertilise and help navigate the area when needed. But my prime job is to harvest. I find it really therapeutic each afternoon to go down and go over all the plants and pick the veggies for our dinners and the gluts that come up and then watering those plants up with love. The kids usually run wild while I do this playing in the garden and in the nearby fruit orchard. 

Honestly its the best part of my day. The kids ride their bikes down while I walk to meet Roy after work to connect and celebrate the effort and love he has put into the patch. He is the king of raising seedlings, turning the garden beds and planting & mulching. 

We work as a team. 

To discover that afternoon that our zucchini had gone missing hit us hard. 

I knew intuitively who had committed the crime and Roy didn’t want to belive me and I didn’t want to believe it either. 

So, of course, we had to find out if there had been other veggies missing from the garden as we share the garden with a couple who live down the road, they have their separate garden beds while we have ours. They are permaculture-based which is super interesting to watch while Roy and I are more traditional farming with patches of bits and pieces well mulched to reduce the weeds. It’s interesting to watch other people’s garden style. But it is also very important to accept that there are different gardening styles and that it’s okay to do things differently and not mess with other people’s garden beds. They also like weeds growing which I find super hard to resist pulling out, but they make mean brews to squirt over the garden with them. So clever. They had made it pretty clear that they like to look after their plants and theirs only and that certain veggies were there. We respected that so adjusted our way of gardening to – this is mine and this is yours. Don’t mess with the beds. 

The day before the incident, grandad delivered us some bio-char (use it, it’s amazing) to spread around the garden with our normal watering efforts and he pulled a weed from one of the beds – their beds! URGH – I freaked out completely, I was like you can’t do that they like them and I explained their style which he understood as a permaculture guru. He rebutted that it was noxious and that it would not compliment a brew and that he is totally okay taking responsibility for pulling the weed out. It didn’t feel right to me.

This could have been the catalyst

Or as it turns out the long list of things that we had done wrong in the garden, like pick their vegetables (which no way in hell we would do because we would hate to blow up our gardening relationship) we know how much work goes into them. Roy had received an earful that we deserved to have our zucchini picked by our fellow gardening companions. 

We were lucky to get it back and cook it up for dinner. 

HOWEVER….

The saga continues because yesterday someone went back to the garden out of spite and cut off all the other zucchini’s that weren’t even big enough to eat so we wouldn’t have any!

The term WTF is totally needed here (what the F*ck)

A 40+-year-old acting like a 5-year-old. 

Humans were given mouths to communicate and speak up when something is not right, not bottle that shit up and then explode. 

It’s funny because my instant reaction is very similar to what she is doing, this is why I can see it a mile away. 

Because here is what I want to do about the situation

1 – Go down to the veggie garden and pull up all their seedlings, so they have no plants left in the ground and completely empty their beds. But let me be honest I don’t have the energy to spend on something so awful because using your energy on something so negative is not going to get me anywhere except war.

2 – Play the game smart – I could go down and start harvesting 1 veggie here and one veggie there from their garden beds. (hmmm even still this still doesn’t sit right because I can feel the wrath of negative energy that would come down on me if I did this)

3 – Let it go and hope like hell it doesn’t happen again and let karma bite them in the bum. 

Obviously we are going with option 3 at the moment until it happens a third time. But we are hoping that this particular person just had to make the final point – WE GOT IT, you dickhead! But seriously taking away the food for a family of 4 during isolation is just mean. 

I believe that life is best spent in a higher vibration, not in anger, blame, regret, and so on. Even though I feel slightly pissed, I am doing the work to stay positive through this whole saga because at the end of the day. Roy and I can manifest anything we want. And if he wants the garden to himself which would make life easier and this is the catalyst for it to happen. So be it. 

I would love to hear from you if you have had a similar situation in a community garden or that feeling when a rodent decided to eat your eggplant before you get to.

Our broad beans
Mixture of Asian Greens
Tromboncino vs New Guinea Bean trellis
Our daily bean harvest

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Lizzie Moult

Lizzie Moult

Planning, cooking, chasing kids & running an online business; it might seem like there is a lot going on. Yet Lizzie is all about living simply and creating a flexible lifestyle that enables plenty of travel, adventure and quality time. A lifestyle writer and photographer for over 10 years for numerous publications, working online for over 14 years Lizzie also works as a mentor for women who are looking to create and live a life with passion & purpose at www.lizziemoult.com.
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