What grows in Barbara Tarter’s garden | Lifestyles



It’s been a hot, dry summer, but somehow Barbara Tarter has managed to pull in a bumper crop.

And by “bumper,” that means she managed to pull at least one gigantic cucumber, and a pretty good sized tomato to boot.

The Nancy resident has managed to grow a Burpless cucumber that is 13 inches long and 8 ½ inches around.

It’s just one of a plethora of cucumbers she’s grown this year. She’s already picked the majority of them, saying she can pick anywhere from 5 to 7 a day.

But this one in particular, Tarter thinks she may have overlooked it during her previous harvests, letting it sit out long enough to get to it’s larger size.

She said she came out one day this week, looked under the leaves, and said, “I couldn’t believe it.”

She also found an Indiana Red tomato this week that was 13 ½ inches around, another good showing.

For the cucumbers, Tarter said she thought part of her good fortune was that she put up a woven wire fence for the vines to climb on. “That keeps them off the ground,” she said.

The garden has gotten a little extra help this year thanks to the pond that also sits on Tarter’s property. Whenever the plants started showing signs of drying up, she said the plan was to drive a barrel down to the pond on an ATV, fill it up with water, then bring the barrel back to the garden and let the water trickle down row by row.

Tarter said this is just the second year she has put out a garden since she lived with her parents.

“I just felt like I need to put out something, so I put it out,” she said.

However, she remembers being a little girl and helping her parents out in the garden as well as helping her father in the fields with his tractor.

That same tractor, a 1951 T-20 Ferguson, sits right next to Tarter’s garden. It’s in the process of getting fixed up, she said, with a friend having gotten it back running. It’s just waiting for some paint right now.

“I was driving it when I was just small,” she said, adding that she always wanted to help her dad, Ed Tarter, around the farm.

“I was driving [the tractor] when I had to stand up to clutch it,” she said.

That tractor meant a lot to her father, she said. Originally, he had said, “he wanted it buried with him because he never got into any hole it hadn’t pulled him out of,” she laughed.

But later, “He said when something happened to him he wanted me to have it,” she said.


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