The day has finally arrived.
After months of waiting and dreaming and planning, gardening season has officially begun. The end of last week brought sunshine and warmer temperatures and finally, our cold nights are over.
After weeks of watering all of my seedlings and plantlings in the greenhouse, I was finally able to get everything into the ground Friday and Saturday.
At least eight flats of flowers (both annuals and perennials) were transplanted into the ground and various containers around the farm.
Of course, at this point, most of those flowers are small and spindly. In a few weeks I will show you the result of all that planting - once the flowers have had a chance to take hold and grow.
Next, I tackled the vegetable garden. Here is what is now planted there:
Previously planted: lettuce, spinach, kale, kohlrabi, sugar peas, radishes, beets, carrots, garlic, onions.
Planted on Saturday: 41 sweet pepper plants, 35 hot peppers,
25 heirloom and regular tomatoes, 9 cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchini and yellow squash, green beans, lima beans, dill, basil, cilantro, and a few other various herbs, more spinach, more radishes, more carrots and beets, celery, and eggplant. In the garden, I planted celosia for drying,
zinnias for cut bouquets, and a flat of various colored morning glories that I stared from seed. This year, I planted morning glories on both sides of the wire tunnel. By the end of summer we will have a beautiful tunnel of morning glories to walk through. I am hoping it ends up as stunning as I imagine.
Saturday was a marathon plant-athon, and I am happy to say it is largely finished! From this point on, all that is left is daily watering and weeding, waiting and watching. And at the end of all of that.... we have a wonderful smorgasbord of homegrown, organic produce. I love this time of year... and happily anticipate and wonderful bounty in the months ahead!
Yes, it is a lot of work, but gardening is my passion. I am happiest when my fingers are in the dirt and I am surrounded by things that grow (plant and human!)
This year I had the idea to plant a row of hollyhocks against our lower pasture fence... on the outside of the small area that we used to keep bees. Hollyhocks against the backdrop of the old wooden fence would be such a welcoming sight to someone just entering the drive up to the farmhouse. Sadly, later that night, the rabbits had other ideas and consumed half of the holly hocks. I will not be defeated, however, and plan to replenish my hollyhocks and spray a predator scent around them to discourage the bunnies (and deer.)
You may have noticed that Minerva Mae Honeycutt has resumed her post in the garden... keeping any marauding birds from making off with our produce. I have tried, quite unsuccessfully to teach her the finer points of weeding... but to no avail. Alas, her weeding skills are negligible. But, she is happy keeping her post... so of course, she can stay. You may notice that she is sporting the same attire as last year. She explained that in the time she was away, she gave a lot of thought to the slow fashion movement and has decided to live life as a minimalist. So, the only clothes she now owns are the ones on her back. Luckily she gets lots of showers while maintaining her garden vigil!
As the season progresses, I will have lots of garden updates - both in produce and flowers!
The only other thing that I accomplished in the first part of the weekend was baking bread. It's been almost a year now since I began baking all of our bread and buying none. I will never go back... at least as long as I am physically able!
Sunday ended up being a super, special day. Easton came to the farm for a special "Easton, only" day. Apparently, asking to go to the farm is Easton's almost-daily mantra. So, having a day here all to himself was a big treat. (His sister had a play date with a friend.)
We spent the day doing all of his favorite things.... riding on everything here on the farm that has an engine.... (and there are pretty many of them)... the tractor being his favorite.
He had a special ride in Muppy's (Jack's grandfatherly name... courtesy of Tyler) go-kart. He has his own little helmet and Muppy drives very slow... still, so very exciting!
He helped a little in the garden... harvesting radishes,
and watering for me.
We cleaned the pasture,
and I couldn't help but notice, both here and all over the farm, tiny Star of Bethlehem flowers are blooming. I have never seen them before, and now, this year they are all over the place!
We stopped to see the crazy chicks, who grow bigger by the day.
Having a day with a little one is surely a treat for them, but it also forces us to slow down a bit. This time of year is very busy and it is easy to be swept away by a list of spring chores. It's a wonderful treat to devote an entire day to nothing but play!