How many freaking watermelons does one thief need? FIVE. The answer is FIVE.
What chafes me most is that the stuff wasn’t ripe! Stealing vegetables is tacky and unethical, but at least you should know what you are doing! I could live in denial about the tomatoes. But the watermelon? Maybe somebody will start a special gardening class for thieves so they can get a ripe one the first time!
This is just what Preppers say will happen to my vegetables when THE APOCALYPSE IS COMING! It’s the end of the world as we know it, and I feel fine. At least R.E.M. feels fine.
Vegetable theft is such a common problem, Google auto-fills the search box as you type it– a sure sign the topic has been searched before. Like my garden.
It’s not deer. Deer don’t leave a pile of reject tomatoes by the driveway.
A few years back, I awoke to a basil stub and a parsley stub. This was at my house in the ‘burbs, not the farm. There are no deer in the ‘hood. Wracking my diminishing brain for what could have happened, I kept going back to look at the half-inch stick that used to be my basil. Realization dawned, slower than a first cup of coffee at noon. It just seems impossible, even years later, that someone would know how to cook with basil and not know how to harvest it. Herbatheft in the ‘burbs.
I’m going to start growing all radishes. Nobody ever steals radishes.
If you are one of the harvest-challenged, you are not alone.
I poo you not, when I sold garlic starts, the first sentence of my explanation about how to grow them started with, “Plant it pointy side up.” Genuine surprise stared back about 25% of the time. Some of the roots are still on it when you buy it at the store! Did they think the roots grew on top?
So if you are that cucumburglar, here’s the easy test: If the fruit comes off the plant easily, it is ready. If the branch/vine/plant breaks, the loot is NOT ready. STOP PULLING when the plant starts to come with you.
Here’s a link to a Cornell article on how to recognize finished vegetables, so you don’t have to take so many to get some good ones.
Another clue: If there is only one watermelon left in the field, it probably wasn’t left as a gift for you. It is probably rotten. Don’t throw it into my neighbor’s yard on your way out. Check to see if there is a big rotten crack in it BEFORE YOU TAKE IT! Ha ha! Gunk’s on you!
“The robbed that smiles steals something from the thief.” ~William Shakespeare
Rebecca Caley started selling plants as a child and opened her first garden center in coastal South Carolina at age 23 – just last year! (Give or take a couple decades.) She now lives outside of Atlanta. She has twin boys, 3 cats, 8 chickens and an 8 foot black rat snake, but it’s just squatting.