Monday, August 17, 2009

My Mother's Garden; Part 2

As promised - more pictures of Estonian gardens. I didn't have my camera handy all the time, to record how much Estonians still garden. Most people have carved out a plot somewhere next to their house, to grow some veggies and flowers. Most housing developments (remnants of the soviet time) have a community garden plot, available to anyone wishing to grow fresh produce.
People living in the city usually have some land in the countryside, where they spend most of their time in the summer, weeding and sweating, canning and preserving.

Next few pictures are of my mom's "across the creek" vegetable garden. As far as I can remember - this is the third location for the veggie garden. It has moved farther away from the house in the years, for various reasons, but still provides the family with all the needed veggies.
When we were there zucchini plants were still tiny, but already starting to produce. And lucky for Estonians - there are no Squash bugs!
Potatoes were not too happy this year. Same time (mid July) in NC farmers were picking potatoes already.
In Estonia they were just starting to bloom, and the long cold and wet spring had not been kind to young potato plants.
Cabbages, carrots, onions, beans - all sorts of cool weather vegetables... Neighbors from across the field also use a few rows of my parents land to grow their food.
Here's the view from the house towards the vegetable garden and fields. The wooden structure in the foreground is "kiik" - a sledge swing, a type of swing original to Estonia. In the olden days young people used to gather during the long summer nights around the "kiigeplats" - "swinging grounds" to swing, sing and dance and eye suitable marriage partners... my dad was the first in the village to build one of those swings after the collapse of the Soviet Union. The original kiik had to be replaced at one point as the beams eventually rotted. But we had many fun times swinging with other village kids, or gathering with family for summer solstice or other summer holidays on that particular "swinging ground".

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