“We’ll bring him back when the garden things are larger and well-enough grown so he can not hurt them,” said Daddy Blake.
Hal and Mab planted their corn and beans. Daddy Blake showed his little girl how to punch holes in the brown earth along a straight row which her father made with the rake handle, and into the holes she dropped the beans, covering them with earth so that they were about two inches down from the top. Hal’s corn did not have to be planted quite so deep, and he dropped five kernels in a circle about as large around as a tea-saucer. This circle would, a little later, be hoed into one big hill of corn.
“How long before my beans will grow?” asked Mab.
“And my corn?” Hal wanted to know.
“Well, beans begin to grow almost as soon as they are in the ground,” answered her father, “but you can’t see them until about a week. Then the little leaves appear. Hal’s corn will take longer, maybe ten days, before any green shows. You must be patient.”
Hal and Mab tried to be, but each day they went out in the garden and looked at where they had planted their beans and corn in the garden rows.
“I don’t believe they’re ever going to grow,” said Mab at last. “Maybe some worms came and took my seeds. I’m going to dig some up and look.”
“Don’t,” begged Hal.
But Mab did. With a stick she poked in the earth until she saw something that made her call:
“Oh, Hal! Look. My beans are all swelled up like a sponge.”
Hal looked, Mab had dug up one bean. It had swelled and split apart, and inside the two halves of the bean something green showed.
“Oh, Mab! Cover it up, quick!” he cried. “The beans are growing—they’re sprouting! Cover it up, quick!”
And Mab did. Now she was sure her beans were growing.
Two mornings afterward she went out into her part of the garden before starting for school. She saw something very queer.
“Oh, Daddy! Hal!” cried the little girl “My beans were planted wrong! They’re growing upside down! The beans are all pushed upside down out of the ground. Oh, my garden is spoiled!”
THE FIRST RADISH
Daddy Blake came hurrying out of the house as Mab called. Hal, who was anxiously looking to see if any of his corn had come up, ran over to his sister.
“What is the matter?” asked Mr. Blake. “Did Roly-Poly come home and scratch in your garden?”
“No. But look at my beans!” wailed Mab. “They’re all upside down.”
It did seem so. Along the rows she had so carefully planted in her garden could be seen some light green stems, some of them curved like the letter U upside down. And sticking out of the brown earth were the beans, split open in two halves.
“Who did it?” asked Mab, tears in her eyes.
Daddy Blake looked and laughed.