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Sunday, May 25, 2008

Spring Hinting at Summer

It has felt wonderful to be working in the garden this week. I work a while until I lose my breath and leg strength, then I sit at the patio table with my feet up on the stool and drink water for a while, while enjoying the view of what I've accomplished. The problem is there is so much more that needs to be done.

Here is how the back dooryard Lavender Garden and Patio, that I built last Spring, look a year later. I love the California Poppies that reseeded themselves all over the area, but I wish that the German Chamomile that I seeded last spring, and this, would come up and bloom with the poppies. I look forward to the Lavender blooms later in the year.

I planted a couple of catnip plants between the house and patio and have to cover them with an old metal refrigerator basket, that Joe dug out his his stash, so that the cats can't roll on the plants or eat them down to the roots. I have a big plant of cat mint in the same bed along with some Mexican Tarragon, but the cats aren't as compulsive about the catmint. I wish I could grow real French Tarragon, but it doesn't winter over, so I just have to use it like an annual, and bring it into the sunporch in a pot in the winter.

I've gotten various kinds of tomatoes, peppers, tomatillas, marigolds, and zinnias transplanted into the veggie garden, and the spinach and mesclun lettuces are seeded. It is so late this year because we kept having frost even after we were having temps in the 80s during the day. We even made it up to 95 this week, (it is not normal for us to have such hot weather this early in the spring, and I'd just as soon it stayed in the 60s and 70s, but I don't get a vote in the matter) and it doesn't seem like we should have any more night frosts. The other unusual weather issue this spring is the nearly constant high winds (we're all sick of wind, but you do what you gotta). Don't you love the circular designs of the tomato cages against the squares of the raised gardens?!

The kittens are running all over the yard, now and even learning how to climb the, so far, leafless Catalpa tree by the veggie garden and Lilliputian Prairie.

I finished cleaning out my miniature Prairie Pond yesterday and have the fountain running, but have lost the fountain head that makes a pretty bell shape of the water, so need to find another to take it's place, and get some pond plants to help keep the water fresh. I will not try any more goldfish, since Slytherin Garter Snake ate them the year before last. He (they) can find his (their) own fish in the irrigation canal out back. I refuse to run a snake sushi bar.

After taking and processing these photos on the computer, I went out to change the water (please note the green hoses so prominent in all my garden photos; without irrigation this area is the Great American Desert in shades of tan and tawney. A lot of my gardening time is taken up in moving the sprinklers from place to place each day. Luckily, even though it is so dry down here, we are beginning to get the runoff from the large snowpack in the high mountains, so have plenty of water to irrigate.) To get back to my original thought, a small dust devil (whirlwind) had blown through the patio and knocked over the umbrella table, breaking a couple of favorite collectibles, an old crock that GranPoppa used to feed his market rabbits in the 50s and a very unusual heavy clear pressed glass pitcher, that was probably a give away with juice or something like it many decades ago.

I cleaned up the mess and can't gripe, because it is so small compared to what our near and far neighbors have been going through with bad winds recently. Last Thursday a unusual large tornado blew through several small towns in Northeast Colorado and damaged over 500 houses, plus destrying 100, with one life lost. Then in the past couple of days a young couple from Rocky Ford (where I was born) were killed in Kansas when their car was blown from the highway into a wheat field but one of a rash of tornadoes in that state. The our neighbors in Asia have gone through such a catastrophe that it is almost impossible to conceive of such damage and loss of life.

The very nature that gives us so much joy can also be the cause of terrible pain and suffering. I choose to continue to appreciate the peace and satisfaction that working in the garden provides to me. Praise the LORD who giveth and taketh away!


Quiltnbee said...

Great report on your gardens, are going to have feasts and bouquets before you know it! Yes, hasn't Nature been leaving some strange and difficult calling cards all over the world...

Rian said...

It's good to see your garden coming alive once again, Fran, in spite of Mother Nature's ferocity.

Allison Ann Aller said...

Love your gardens...and your attitude!

diva of quilts said...

What a lovely garden! I've got 4 volunteer tomato plants this summer.

Deb H said...

Inch - by -inch everything is a cinch. Or at least that's what they say at Weight Watchers. Seemed somewhat appropriate for your garden.

I saw photos of one of those storms. How terrifying to be anywhere near something that devastating. Those poor people.