Thursday, May 21, 2009

A Love/Hate Relationship

I'm pedaling as fast as I can (puff-puff), but I don't think I'm gaining anything. What an invigorating and renewing time of year, but so frustrating and tiring at the same time because everything needs to be done at once . . . and my crew of six apprentices failed to show up again this year. Sigh.

While I have 251 individual started plants in the house (flowers and veggies), I have yet to plant one single thing outside in any of the twenty-seven 4' x 8' raised beds, or in the field garden, or in the pumpkin patch.

I can't chalk it all up to laziness either. We're experiencing another spring like last year's. Cold, wet, cold, windy . . . did I say cold? Just no sense setting plants out or even putting seeds in the cold, wet ground. Last spring we saw June 1st pop up on the calendar and said, "Well, phooey, we can't wait any longer than this!" Come June 15th, I wasn't the only gardener around who was replanting rotted seeds and searching for started plants to replace those that caught pneumonia and keeled over.

But I do have the raspberry patch in good shape, including having planted (with my husband's help) six new Honey Queen canes (a yellow raspberry, supposedly unbelievably sweet). Monday night I staggered inside covered from head to toe with peat moss after having gotten the whole blueberry patch in tip-top shape. Still have the strawberries to finish but am hoping it will be dry enough to get out there this afternoon. We had another terrific thunderstorm last night dropping 1/2" of rain on us. It's 53 degrees right now around noontime, but there's a dampish breeze blowing, and I just had to shut the window over my desk. Br-r-r.

The above picture is all I have to offer with this post. (And not a very good one at that!) We've seen one male Rose-Breasted Grosbeak and two females at once so we're pretty sure we may have two pair of them hanging around. Hope you can find this guy perched in one of our apple trees. (Look at the left middle.) And, no the tree isn't dead. There aren't any leaves showing yet, although the fruit trees are starting to bud out. (Told you it's been cold.)

I think I'll go put on my mud boots, longjohns, down work jacket, plop a hat on my head and go play in the strawberries. The fresh air will feel wonderful (there's even some sun peeking through) and maybe if I stay close enough to the ground, the wind won't hit me and I'll avoid getting chilblains.


MaineCelt said...

Congrats on doing everything a Northern gardener CAN do, this time of year! A month from now, I bet your entire garden will be bursting with productive growth!

I was in despair about this year's garden until I got a call from my godfather this afternoon. He's clearing out his plant nursery warehouse a bit, and that means I'm going to get a big goodie box! It won't help with this year's production, but in future years we can look forward to a wider range of apples, plums, cold-hardy peaches and cherries, strawberries and raspberries, and who knows what else!!!

Goodness... it took hours of wandering and pondering to decide where my meager order of five trees from FedCo would go. Now I'd better figure out where to put MORE trees! Ack!!!

Mama Pea said...

MaineCelt - Talk about a cool goodie box to look forward to! Does your godfather want another goddaughter? I'm available.

Anonymous said...

Curious if you can post a picture of your blueberries? Last fall I moved to a property in upstate NY that has *lots* of old highbush blueberries. (like maybe 50 or so bushes over an acre in two areas) They've been neglected, many have other trees growing up through them and many are shaded. This year I'm clearing things that shade them and next year I'll try to prune. All the internet wisdom I've seen on these refers to bushes that have been better taken care of. What do yours look like?

Mama Pea said...

Hi, Anonymous - I'll do a "blueberry post" with a picture or two soon. I wonder if your bushes will bear any fruit for you this year?