A friend, who teaches at a local college, recently spoke of being relieved for unlike most years, she had finished grading student papers before the holidays. They were not hanging over her head.
My seed order hangs there. Well not her head, but mine. The catalogs are resting over at the Pathway School where I teach. It is winter break. This weekend I will travel to the school, check the plants, and bring them home where I can sit back with some jazz and make a decision.
The students have helped quite a bit. First by circling photos of flowers and veggies that caught their eye. Then we get serious and narrow it down. I love to hand a seed catalog to a students and say, "read all the descriptions of ________ and then explain to me why I should go with your choice."
I have had more than one student drawn to the extra-large version of vegetables. I don't favor them, so I have rejected most of their requests with ... bigger does not mean better.
But this year a student told me a story. He remembers going to get a monster pumpkin and the trouble of getting it home. Later, after they had found a home for it, the pumpkin rolled and smashed. We do the math... one plant covers 70 square feet. We make a deal, he digs out a new bed, I buy the seeds and let him takeover. I will guide him, but it will be his plot.