Sunday, April 22, 2012

A Month Ahead and A Month Behind

Azaleas are peaked or past peak.

Roses are busting out.
I was just going through last year's photos of the garden and it looks like we are almost a month ahead in terms of bloom times. In fact, my garden seems like it's in a big hurry, and every flower and every plant is vying for attention. The azaleas bursted open as if they were trying to beat out the daffodils. The roses woke up so early, I thought they might ask for a cup of coffee. The dogwoods flowered so fast, I almost missed them. And the May-blooming irises and peonies are warming up in the batter's box for their turn at the April plate.

We're finally going to get some rain today and it couldn't come at a better time because while the garden is out ahead, the Putterer is way behind at work. So today, I'm going to be head down at home on the keyboard. Though, really that doesn't bother me. It's a pleasant task, I'm writing little blurbs on the cool things to see at each of the museums. I might even run downtown and take in a museum, or two, to complete the task.

A bus man's holiday.

Meanwhile, I couldn't be more pleased with the garden this year. I'm right on schedule, having put down mulch for the first time in half a dozen years on some of the beds and staunched a few weeds. I got grassseed down just before the early spring showers arrived, so the blades are robust and thick. I grew red lettuce, kale and chard from seed, so the vegetable patch is ready to deliver. I worked and worked
Dogwoods are showering their petals.
Swiss chard is ready for picking
the soil over at the community garden. I grew a cover crop of clover, then turned it over in trenches, row by row, mixing in compost so that my beds are thick and spongy, and teaming with earthworms. Over there, I've got sugar snap peas and greens growing in one bed and the others are ready to plant just as soon as the nights can be counted on to stay warm. I've got tomatoes, melons, cukes, swiss chard, basil, eggplant, peppers, onions and parsley starts all thriving under my lights and waiting to go out to be hardened off and planted.

Today, the temperature shouldn't  rise above 55, so I've got my fireplace humming with a toasty blaze. Delicious coffee in hand. Snoozy pup snuggling beside me. It's going to be a wonderful day today.

An early spring for an at-the-ready gardener. Not a bad thing at all. The Putterer

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