Friday, May 30, 2008
Wednesday, May 28, 2008
I think back on the lifespan of garden blogs. I miss Judith and Liz. Their blogs were beacons for me. But each month there are new bloggers out there with fresh insights and energy. My own commitment to the practice has flagged this past year. I am afraid it is what it is.
But for what it is worth, I am back in the saddle and ready to engage another full season. For those of you who have been "lurking," please leave a comment so I can find my way to YOU.
Friday, May 23, 2008
I found that the challenge really helped to keep me in the game last year. And I learned so much about other people's ideas for how to get a good local meal on the table without a big fuss.
Wednesday, May 21, 2008
Tuesday, May 20, 2008
So I am sitting here with a sense of oneness with the rain.
This tile is archetypal for me. It is about the oneness I feel with the earth when I engage it for sustenance. The human is grounded with his feet below ground. His mind ( the orange hat ) is the same color as the carrot below ground. Connecting to the earth grounds him in the truest sense.
When I bought this tile from Andrew Van Asche at his booth in the ACC Crafts Fair in Baltimore I asked him what it meant. Good artist that he was, he asked me what it meant to me. I said something not so coherent and ended by asking him, "But why the Number 1 in the upper left corner?" And he said, "Because I am a gardener, when it rains I feel at one with the rain."
So at this moment, I am at one with the rain. And I am humming that simple old Utah Phillips song that Rosalie Sorrels used to perform, "If I Could Be the Rain"
Sunday, May 18, 2008
Saturday, May 17, 2008
The old almanacs are rich in advice about how to use the moon to plant. The first quarter welcomes the planting of cukes, corn and cress to name a few. The second quarter peas, peppers and pumpkins. The third quarter parsnips, potatoes and rutabaga. Here in the fourth quarter I should be turning sod, pulling weeds and destroying noxious growth.
Back in my other life, when I taught high school history, I liked to use a little extra time we had at the end of class for a "pop quiz." "OK we have 2 minutes before the bell, take out a piece of scrap paper and answer this question. You have 45 seconds. If you went outside tonight at 10 pm and looked for the moon, what direction would you look ... east, west or overhead ... AND what shape would it be?" "Fold them up and hand them to me as you leave the room." I was always disappointed at how totally unaware they were about the moon and its phases. Truth is I would have gotten the same results in the faculty lounge.
Being close to the earth in some strange way brings us close to the heavens as well. The detached suburban lives most of us lead, leave us not only ungrounded but also dis - astered ... detached from stars.
In the sky the phantom moon appears at midday
To join the sun in some forgotten dance
In their light our voices tremble with reflections
Of what we know and what we leave to chance
We have dreams we hold them to the light like diamonds
Stones of the moon and splinters of the sun
Some we keep to light the dark nights on our journey
And shine beyond the days that we have won
Friday, May 16, 2008
Thursday, May 15, 2008
Monday, May 12, 2008
Thursday, May 08, 2008
As I rumbled onto the ferry boat Friday evening under gray skies and a northeast wind I wondered why ANYONE would leave behind the 80 degree weather of the Mid-Atlantic for THIS ! But one quiet moment at the edge of the garden and I knew why.
My seedlings are safely under lights in the basement and I have busied myself with cleanup chores left undone last fall. I have been collecting pine needles from the edge of the property and after carefully removing the early weeds, have put a thick layer of pine needles on all the pathways. I am almost done. I have planted two rows of snap peas and three rows of green beans.
Wednesday, May 07, 2008
Thursday, May 01, 2008
At Longdale Nursery on Route 42 I found Italian Sweets, Better Boys and Belgian Giants. Then my friends at Walatoola were kind to share some of THEIR starter tomatoes with me. I added some Boxcar Willies, Little Momas, Principe Borgheses, and some of their green peppers suited for northern climate. They also gave me a gift of a lovely lemon verbena not to mention a healthy bundle of their first asparagus harvest and fresh arugula.
The meal on Tuesday night was local and tasty. The rack of lamb from Highland County was brimming with the flavor of the Bluegrass Valley and the asparagus was as fresh as could be. Here at home, I have some Big Zacs started and the artichokes while a little leggy, I think are off to a good start.
Tomorrow the operation moves north and the prep and planting begin in earnest.