Measuring Up: July 2012

The only thing better than the garden in June, is the garden in July.  The colors, the flavors, and the variety have increased exponentially in the past month, leaving me both relishing in every beautiful harvest and racing to keep up with all the fresh produce.  
From the warm sunset hues of pretty peppers, tomatoes, carrots, beets and berries, to the summery spectrum of crisp green zucchini, beans, broccoli, peas, and basil, there are few things in this world as beautiful as vegetables grown in your own garden.  Even the most meager harvest is the badge of honor that through every day spent waiting for that first tomato to ripen, every hot, dry day spent watering, every thunderstorm weathered, and every squash bug squished, something not only survived, but actually thrived enough to bear fruit.  Every gardener I know has earned the right to shout, LOOK AT WHAT I GREW!  ISN'T IT THE MOST AMAZING THING YOU'VE EVER SEEN!?!?  
But now that I am standing back a bit, looking at the overall productivity of my little patch of earth this year, I am struck with a new sense of awe.  In addition to an appreciation for each individual harvest, I'm just starting to get a better grasp on what it really means to grow one's food.  Even in my third year of growing in my little garden, I had no idea I could grow this much in one month's time. 
The local grocery store now knows why it's been over two weeks since they've seen me.

And I don't know if there's much more that I can say to sum up this past month's harvest any better than that.  I could go on and on about how prolific the zucchini have been, but then I'd have to talk about how perfectly sweet the Sun Gold tomatoes are, and then I'd have to tell you how amazing the Santa Fe peppers taste, and on and on and on, and this post would never end.
As the garden roars into August, I know that the best is still yet to come.  By my count there are still 26 different varieties growing in my gardens that I haven't harvested from yet, which means the summer isn't coming to a close by a long shot.  After all, the only thing better than the garden in July, is the garden in August!