Monday, March 7, 2011
The Possibilities of Spring
Spring is in the air, as fresh and clean as a drop of dew landing on a crocus in full bloom. Blue skies two days in a row forecast change on the horizon. Nieces and nephews clamor for their wooden swing sets, built by strong capable hands, that seem just a little smaller after a season of growth. Yes, I love the promise of spring, a promise which is about hope.
My optimistic ideas about completing winter sewing projects are still very much alive, even as I fill seed trays with starter soil and rake up dead leaves that threaten to smother my spring bulbs. Oh, the possibilities.
Here is a glimpse into my vegetable garden plans this year:
Clemson spineless Okra (Growing okra is new for me...but last year I added okra to my canned vegetable soup and loved it!)
Big Beef Tomatoes (An extra-beefy early producer for slicing)
Amish Paste Tomatoes (my old stand by for canning)
Blue Lakes Bush Green Beans (we liked Burpee’s “Tenderpod” last season, but my seed source talked this one up pretty high)
Hot Peppers- Garden Salsa. A new variety for us, a hot red pepper just right for salsa.
Lettuce- Buttercrunch and Salad Bowl
Sweet corn- Incredible, new for me, and supposedly one of the best selling super-sweet varieties. This is for eating fresh, not canning of course!
As soon as the ground is worked I can’t wait to put in some spinach. And who knows what else I’ll decide at the last minute. There’s always room for more.
I’m also adding more raspberries, and replacing the strawberry patch that bit the dust last summer when I was recovering and unable to tend to it properly. But since the strawberries took up a lot of room, and the weeding is always more than I bargain for, I’m going to experiment with container planting and see if that has any benefits.
What aren’t we doing this year? Peas are still up in the air, and we’ve only got a little time left to decide. Last year we had trouble getting the trellis and irrigation going in time to have a decent planting. We haven’t done pole limas in a couple years, although I have the seeds for them. Generally, I’m lousy at picking them and can’t tell by feeling the pod whether they are the right size or not. I always pick them too big, and the Mister is far too busy to pick them when the harvest is ripe. Carrots are a possibility only if I can get pelleted seed. The problem with carrots is always the same: As you are thinning them out, the carrot flies smell it for miles around and head right to your house so they can eat your carrots. I’d like to avoid thinning as much as possible.
Of course, I haven’t even planned my herb garden yet, but you can be sure there will be one. The True Lavender germinating in my mini-greenhouse right now attests to it. Oh, the possibilities!
What new possibilities do you see in your garden this year?