Well, here is an update on the pumpkin situation. The one Cinderella pumpkin sits on my front porch, making me happy when I see what I have grown.

But my neighbor deserves credit for figuring out what was wrong with my pumpkins. She told me I had to mate them. Yes. Mate. Male pollen sprinkled into female flower.

I told my dad, who is an old farmer–really, he raised lots of cantaloupes and lettuce on a big farm when I was little. He had a huge vegetable garden on our plot in town. (To give credit, my mother is an excellent gardener too.) He scoffed, guffawed (you know what I mean). Dad resistance.

“You don’t have to do that,” he said. “That’s baloney.”

“It’s true,” I said. “I read it on the Internet.”

More scoffing.

But I think so. All the bees are dying. If the bees die, they can’t fertilize your pumpkins. I told him this. I guess he admitted my point of view–but only slightly.

So once I studied those Internet pictures on male and female flowers on pumpkins (that’s it, I swear), I marched up my hill to the small planter I have on our “vista,” which sees nothing but treetops. I peered into one of the yellow blooms.

Buzzzzzzzzzz. Yikes. I jumped. Out flew a bee right at my nose. Okay, Dad, maybe you were right. This is hogwash.

But then I started looking for females. There were plenty of male flowers . In fact, too many. Not one female anywhere! The only female must have been fertilized by some miracle of survivor bee power. But now, it’s a locker room of manliness.

That’s why I have no baby pumpkins. I have only men flowers to mate. Who knows where the females, with their tiny pumpkin babies sitting at the stalk of their flowers, went or why they aren’t growing.

It makes me kinda sad.

Well, there’s always next year. That is the good thing about a garden. In a garden, you can always start over.