I’ve been here a few weeks so I guess I’ll introduce myself.
I’m from southeastern Connecticut, married, and we have two kids (3 and 1).
I’m interested in gardening because of my grandfather’s influence on me. He grew up on a dairy farm and lived next door to it as an adult. His yard had 2 ~20 foot grape trellises, 4 (semi-dwarf?) apple trees, 4 pear trees, 2 peach trees, about 30 blueberry bushes, and a very large vegetable garden. His vegetable garden was so large that he couldn’t keep it all in the ~1/3 of an acre (out of his 1 acre lot) that he used for gardening. He owned a separate lot out back that was about a half acre and used it just to grow pumpkins, gourds, and tomatoes. He kept a produce stand in his yard and grew so many of the pumpkins and tomatoes that he’d fill up his F150 and, with the pumpkins, his trailer also and deliver them to a local garden center. He kept a heated greenhouse, two flocks of chickens (free range and non-free range), and rabbits. At one point he had a goat but it didn’t last very long. He was a total farmer. Some of my fondest memories growing up involved eating the sweet corn my uncle (who worked at the farm) would plant by putting a bunch of sweet corn seed from Agway in the bottom of the bin before filling the rest of the bin with cow corn seed. My grandfather’s neighbors included that farm (which was run by one of his brothers), two of his sisters, and across the street was one of his nephews. His older sister was also big into gardening. They had many of the same things, but also currants (red & black), gooseberries, raspberries (red & yellow), and were pretty adventurous and less “business like” than my grandfather was when it came to what varieties of fruits and vegetables they grew. That little 400+ acre area (and some of the surrounding woods) was an extended family compound of sorts and us grandkids had the run of the place.
I never really got into gardening until after I was out of college, after my grandfather had died. Right now the house is up for sale, and no one from my generation wants to work the dairy farm that’s next door. It’s hard work and with the way prices have been for a while you lose money doing it.
Ever since I joined this site I’ve been (pretty obsessively) searching back through the archives, trying to learn as much as I can. We somewhat recently purchased a house so I have a lot of things to get started with.