More and Bigger

My Dad did everything big. He always ordered two beers as soon as he sat down, or two vodkas or two gins, you get the idea. He repeated phrases to make sure you understood. When he shopped he would buy the shirt in every color.

A few years ago when I visited him at the farm he asked me if I wanted some zinnia seeds as his internet order had arrived. I said, “Sure,” and he handed me four bags that totaled two pounds of seeds.

FOUR POUNDS of zinnia seeds could be a three acre field of zinnias! Think of a thousand of those little paper envelopes of seeds all dumped into a bucket.

I planted handfuls of those seeds. They made a beautiful bed in front of our house. I gave handfuls of seeds away. I planted more the next year, gave more away.

Seeds have a shelf life. I tried to use up those bags or give them away as fast as I could. It was so like my father to have bought twenty times more seeds than any of us could possibly plant.

Today I pulled out my last giant bag of zinnia seeds. It was easily at least 7 ounces still left. My Dad has been gone a year and a half and the seeds still exist. Russ and I added compost to my zinnia bed, which has gotten bigger every year. I lay out six long rows of seeds, sown heavy, since I have so many and am unsure if they might still germinate. Even with this bigger bed I still have seeds left. So like my Dad, more than anyone could ever use.

I hope that I get some flowers to have one more summer of my Dad in my garden. Eventually I will have to order my own seeds, but for now I still have the gift my Dad gave me.

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