January 22, 2011

Spring, she is a Comin'

It's been raining and gray, but there are buds starting to swell on the clematis and the cherry tree, and Cliff Mass says winter will be over in a month. The sarcococca the front yard is blooming, the hellebore might be thinking about it, and the rhubarb is trying again to put up a stalk after the last two have been snowed on and frozen. Gotta love the stubbornness of plants.

So it seemed like a good time to sort through the seed box, throw out things "packed for 2007" and count what I have from last year (an unopened package of eggplant seeds?). I'm not planning anything ambitious for the garden, no "challenge vegetables" this year. I have the four beds in the back yard and the 100 sq. ft. p-patch plot 2 blocks away, and last year keeping up with those felt just at the edge of what I could manage. I admire all those who are working to feed their families primarily from their backyards, but I don't think I can count myself among them; partly it's a space issue and partly is a reluctance to take on the challenge (and mess) of livestock. I'm sticking to veggies and the farmer's market, the usual canning and freezing and drying activities, and maybe more batches of traditional cheddar (the best of last year's hard cheeses).

The seed orders are in: potatoes, onions, and a melon from Seed Saver's Exchange and spinach, peas, carrots, butternut squash, zucchini, and kale from West Coast Seeds. I still have beans, pumpkins, mixed greens, basil and that unopened package of eggplant seeds. I'll get tomato plants from the farmer's market in June and order the seed garlic in August. So I think I'm ready for you, Spring, and I'll see you in late February.

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