Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Enjoying the spring ... again

Whew! All my muscles ache and my back feels as if it will stay permanently bent, but it is oh so good to be back in the garden.

Kudos to the spinach which produces sufficiently to feed us every third day. Pleased to see the asparagus is working its way into production. There are about 8 spears nearing readiness. Soon it will be hard to keep up.

I have been amending beds with Harmony and Azomite and have been tweaking the garden plan. Despite my mantra “if it doesn’t grow below, let it go” this year, I still have a nursery FULL of tomato plants. I think I enjoy the fussing almost more than the tasting. But since I will be away for a month in high summer, I need to work on timing things just right.

It has been fun getting to enjoy a second spring. As we drove north along the coast it was like watching the landscape do a backward time lapse on itself. It went from green, to yellow and green, to spaces between the leaves, to hints of red, to just fuzzy. I got to see the red bud come out again, and when I arrived here the shadbush was the only thing blooming.

I had never taken notice of the shadbush until last year. April and May in my “other life” were spent focused indoors. Sadly, I barely knew there was a natural world out there as I prepped my students for their AP exams. But last spring at Walatoola I saw my first “serviceberry” and when I arrived in New England I was delighted to find one blooming on my own property. The folk etymology of serviceberry which is the preferred name in western Virginia comes from the American pioneer experience that when these came in bloom the land had thawed sufficiently to bury those who had died over the winter. Here in New England we call them shadbush because they coincide with the shad run.

The shadbush is one of many living things that has one brief moment in the year when it stands out and announces itself as something different and spends the rest of the year blended in with the surroundings. AND the shadbush is for me anyway a sign that there are new things to learn and see if you make time to look.

It is raining now and will continue to do so for several days to come. It feels good knowing that the roses have been fed, the beds amended and the garlic is thirsty.

1 comment:

Liz said...

I adore shadbush! Ours is past peak bloom now.. it's so transient. But the fall foliage is striking!