“But you didn’t tell us what makes the seeds grow,” said Mab, as she watched her father carefully smooth the soil in the box and then scatter in the tomato seeds, afterward covering them up with a piece of window glass.
“I’ll tell you as best I can, though no one really knows what is in the seed to make it grow. Only Mother Nature knows that. But at least we have a start with our garden,” said Daddy Blake, “and to-morrow I’ll tell you, as well as I can, why a seed grows. It is time to go to bed now.”
As Hal and Mab started up stairs, thinking what a wonderful thing it was to have a garden, there came a ring at the front door.
“My! Who can be calling this time of night?” asked Mother Blake, in surprise.
Hal and Mab wondered too.
UPSIDE DOWN BEANS
“Let’s wait and see who it is, Hal,” whispered Mab to her brother as they stood on the stairs.
“Maybe it’s somebody come to find out about a garden,” added the little boy. “Daddy knows lots about how to make things grow, and maybe, on account of the war, everybody’s got to plant corn and beans and things.”
“I don’t like war and soldiers,” spoke Mab, while Daddy Blake went to the front door. “I don’t care when you play soldier, and make believe shoot your pop gun, but I don’t like real guns. Maybe this is somebody come to tell Daddy to go to war.”
“I hope not!” exclaimed Hal.
When Daddy Blake opened the door the children heard some one saying:
“I guess this little fellow belongs to you, Mr. Blake. I found him over in my garden, digging away. Maybe he was planting a bone, thinking he could grow some roast beef,” and a man’s laugh was heard. Then came a sharp little bark.
“Oh, it’s Roly-Poly!” cried Hal.
“He must have run away and we didn’t miss him ’cause we talked so much about the garden,” added Mab. “I wonder where he was?”
“Yes, that’s my children’s dog,” said Mr. Blake to the man who had brought home Roly-Poly. “So he was in your garden; eh?”
“Well, yes, in the place where I’m going to make a garden. My name is Porter, I live next door. Only moved in last week and we haven’t gotten acquainted yet.”
“That’s right,” said Mr. Blake. “Well, I’m glad to know you, Mr. Porter. Hal and Mab will be pleased to have Roly-Poly back, I’m also glad to know you’re going to have a garden. I’m going to start my two youngsters with one, and if Roly-Poly comes over, and digs out your seeds, let me know and I’ll keep him shut up.”
“I will, and you do the same with my chickens. They’re bad for scratching in a garden, though I plan to keep them in their own yard. So your boy and girl are going to have gardens; are they?”
“Yes. I want them to learn all they can about such things.”