It might seem strange to think about vegetable and flower gardening in the throes of winter, but the arrival of mailed seed and nursery catalogues is imminent.
Those companies know that this fallow time is when gardeners dream and plan. I have enjoyed planting since I was young and have had varying successes. I love to watch things grow.
My neighbor tried his hand at vegetables for the first time last year. I watched as he unloaded soil from his pickup truck to construct a raised bed. He added aged cow manure. He recorded sunlight hours on different parts of his 5-by-6-foot plot and figured out his planting so that the growing plants got optimal sun and didn't shade one another. He also watered the right amounts with water that I gladly shared from my rain barrel.
My soil, on the other hand, is becoming depleted of nutrients and is becoming more shaded by nearby trees.
His garden, about one-fifth the size of mine, produced double what I was getting. He had plenty of tomatoes, onions, peppers and cucumbers. He had a bit of broccoli. We watched his eight stalks of corn grow, tassel and form ears. It would be ready to pick in just a couple of days.
But we found the stalks broken down one morning. We weren't sure what had invaded his fenced plot, but one afternoon I watched as a groundhog scaled our backyard fence. I didn't know that they could do that.
As I reflected upon last year's gardens, my mind wandered to other events and happenings of this past year with successes and surprises, good times and some challenges.
At this time of year, there often is talk of New Year's resolutions. It seems that many resolutions are broken within a few weeks. My plan this year will be to embrace personal growth in natural ways in my life.
Speaking of growth, SCOR (Senior Citizens of Reynoldsburg) continues to grow in its membership and in its activity participation. The numbers continue to astound us.
Here are some categories of activities and hours of involvement for this past year: art, 1,954 hours; community education, 923 hours; community Service, 633 hours; cultural events, 346 hours; fitness/exercise, 12,239 hours; health screening, 257 hours; information sharing, 1,756 hours.
Of course, there are always activities and opportunities for growth. Following are some upcoming events. If you need to call ahead to sign up or if you have questions here is the SCOR office number: 614-866-5890.
* Jan. 2, 2 p.m.: Burg Bookies. All Creatures Great and Small by James Herriot.
* Jan. 9, 1 p.m.: Ear-Resistible Trivia Challenge addresses function, safety and statistical facts about hearing loss and Cap Tel telephone as an important device.
* Jan. 16, 2 p.m.: Trip presentation for the Sept 21-25 trip to Heart of Texas, including Magnolia Market and HGTV Fixer Upper Tour.
* Jan. 17, 9 a.m.: Lawyer Series, Can I Protect Assets Against Beneficiaries? Presented by James Hardgrove, Esq.
* Jan. 17, 9 a.m.: Coffee Shop Hop.
* Jan. 28, 10:30 a.m.: Mystery Lunch.
* Jan. 30, 9:30 a.m.: Franklin Park Conservatory. $13.
* Feb. 5, 2:30 p.m.: New Member Meeting to learn about the variety of SCOR programs.
* Feb. 6, 2 p.m.: Burg Bookies. Lost Roses, by Martha Hall Kelly.
* Selected Saturdays, 11 a.m.-1 p.m.: Ohio Senior Health Insurance Information; Allan Meisterman will answer Medicare and supplemental health insurance questions/concerns.
* Second Saturdays, 1 p.m.: WOW Widows or Widowers support group.
May your 2020 be a year of growth!
Vicki Albrecht spent 32 years as a teacher before retiring. She has been a member of SCOR since 2014. SCOR provides this column to ThisWeek Reynolsburg News.