Wow, has it really been that long?
Once again I am a slacker.
Then again, I've worked three weekends out of the last four (and I only got the one off because I was having surgery...) and a number of evenings - and this from a job where the major selling point was no nights and weekends because we have off shift staff.
Since my last post, the cherry trees have bloomed, as have the daffodils, the forsythia, the vincas, some ornamental pears and crabapples... next up should be magnolias, more apples, redbuds, dogwoods, tulips... Next thing I know there will be leaves on all the trees.
There's something about the beginning of spring that I just love. Those cherry trees are so boring and unremarkable fifty weeks of the year, but oh man those two weeks when the cherry blossoms are out make up for all the rest.
I haven't gotten much done lately - between work and my lame foot, I haven't been much use to man or beast. But I have had a little time to do some reading, some learning, even some YouTube surfing for new gardening experiments to try.
I'm not at all confident that the soil here is going to burst forth with vegetable glory. Some areas are reddish-orange clay, other areas are sandy and gravelly. There's a good bit of organic matter in places, but there's also tons of shade and roots to compete with. It's not that I don't think there's anything to work with, I just have to learn what this ground is capable of. At some point we have plans to clear some trees - but not too much. But then you throw in deer, possums, birds, squirrels, and who knows what else (mosquitoes, chiggers, ticks), and it's not the blank garden slate I had in Ohio. Plus, it's much drier here and the summers are longer.
In short, I have a lot to learn.
So my plan for this year are not overly ambitious. Let's just put this dirt through some paces and see what works and what doesn't. Since we have a lot of rotting wood laying around the property, I want to try a hugelkultur experiment. I also want to try growing some crops in self-watering containers. In fact, the only things I'm definitely going to grow in the ground are potatoes, corn, squashes, and melons. Well, and let's be honest - I will end up sticking tomato plants in every leftover space.
Unfortunately, though I'm eager to get started, I haven't had the time or mobility to actually do much yet. And the one flat of seeds I did try to start was dumped by Amelia within a half hour of finishing. I was too disheartened to replant them. I will probably do that tomorrow. And since I'm already behind when it comes to seedlings indoor, I may end up buying some in the end...
Despite all that, the trees are popping and it's only the beginning of March. I'm ready to get some dirt under my fingernails one way or another...