Sunday, September 20, 2009


A co-worker of my husbands asked him last week if we wanted any tomatoes. He said he had a ton and would give me all that he didn't want to use himself. Now, I got visions of spaghetti sauce, tomato sauce, bottled tomatoes, ketchup and all sorts of wonderful tomato based products dancing through my head and told Hubby to tell him I would take anything he was willing to give me. I would in turn give him some spaghetti sauce or whatever else I had made that he might want.
Hubby came home from work yesterday evening and told me this co-worker had sent me something. I got all excited untill he picked up his lunch pail. What I had in mind would not fit into his lunch pail. He pulled out a ziploc bag with four tomatoes in it.
The co-workers garden had been raided and these 4 tomatoes were all that was left! He spent all spring tilling and planting, all summer watering and weeding. He went away for the weekend and came home to an empty garden. They cleaned out everything he had grown. He has NOTHING to show for all of his hard work. Why would someone feel they were entitled to something they had no part of producing? I don't know how this individual feels. but I would be furious if it happened to me.


  1. That is unfortunate. Seems like having your garden surrounded by a tall fence with a dog inside might be good advice. Come to think of it that is probably good advice for anything you value.

  2. In the 1960's I recall visiting my uncle, and listening to stories about stealing watermelons. My uncle related that at least one patch was guarded - he got hit with a shotgun load of rock salt on one excursion.

    I think we tend to think of gardens as private, and hobbies - and forget the sheer amount of food and money - I imagine that someone passed a bunch of the garden at a farmers market - that a garden represents to those with less than savory character.

    Things like this might be strangers trolling a neighborhood - see how many other gardens have been raided in the area, be *danged* sure the theft gets reported to authorities so they can be aware if a pattern develops.

    You may have been willing to can and preserve those tomatoes - most thieves won't put that much productive labor or time into anything.

    As we expect the economic deflation collapse to begin, or peak oil or the 2012 strikes from space or the KGB's prediction that California and New York will stop sending the Feds any taxes - gardens will come to mean life-and-death or at least comfortable eating for more and more families.

    I imagine that a good haul of beans, tomatoes, and what not got the thieves more than a couple of TVs would, and likely less chance of getting caught with the goods, once they cleared the area. Plus they are in a position that anything that didn't sell right away - they give to friends in trade for food and favors.

    Anyone that doesn't see the garden as a commodity, and a family asset at least as valuable as the pantry, needs to think again.

  3. Me again.

    I meant to say, this is more likely kids or people living fairly close, someone that knew about the trip.

    Kids and others sometimes shoplift or steal, thinking only themselves, the cops, and whatever they steal is involved - they haven't learned yet to understand they damage the community and hurt the people they steal from.

    Which is slight consolation for the food no longer available this winter, and a very good reason to consider this as any other grand felony theft (value over $25). No one would benefit if the thieves were allowed to think this was just another video games score or edgy YouTube video opportunity. Character building starts with facing consequences.

  4. If it had been my house, it never would have happened. I have one dog that is quite mean and one more that looks mean. All five dogs bark. Alot. No one can even walk down the street in front of my house without me knowing it.
    I just hope tht whoever took the produce used it for something instead of throwing them at cars of someones house or something like that.

  5. This isn't the first time I've heard a story like this from this growing season. We had a similar incident here in Western Montana at a friend's garden. What on earth is wrong with people??? Bad Karma.

  6. On an e-mail list some years back someone talked of coming home and finding a man filling his pick up from their garden. She was alone and he beat feet before she could get help.
    She called the sheriff. She had no way to 'prove' the produce was hers, he sold it at farmers market.
    A good fence and some dogs sounds like an answer.


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