May Day and Mid-Spring Report. (This next week is smack dab middle of spring and full of some of the bestest silly holidays!)
Spring so far… what a wild ride! We’ll start with the Market Garden…
Market Garden Report Part One
Here in the Puget Sound region we had one of the strangest winters. It was oddly mild. And yet, the resident ice skater managed to get in two big skates and have a skating party with her nephews and friends.
This meant death to the winter brassica (broccoli, cabbage, Brussels sprouts etc.) They just weren’t ready for the two surprise deep freezes. Both freezes followed exceptionally mild – warm – trends and then stuck around long enough to ensure frozen ponds and dead plants. They rallied after the first freeze and I was sure I could nurture them over the shock, but then, in spite of the protection I gave them the second deep freeze just plain took them out. After that I was just nurturing molding piles of mush.
Things looked up after that and the mildness continued including mild rainfall, this spring was looking good…back in February, before spring started. At the end of February, the holding ponds around the Market Garden were empty! And then March began. And the rain came. Record rainfall March. It seemed to never stop. Then it did stop for a few days, mid April, and when it did rain, it didn’t seem like a lot of rain at once. I even smoothed out the tractor tracks on the access road to the garden. Things began looking up, again. And then it rained, really rained, putting this April into the record book right along with March. And the tractor ruts are so deep a large child could get lost in them.
The Market Garden has remained too wet to till the empty beds; too wet to move season extenders to their next spot; the over winter beds have been too wet to weed; the interior of the main hot house and other season extenders have been flooded; the Gardener has had massive bouts of depression.
Chaos has ensued. Plans have been rewritten and rewritten and hands have been wrung.
This was not the year to decide to reconstruct the Market Garden and have a productive year (and yes, I did the former and wanted the latter). So yes, next year will be better because even if it rains the same amount or more.
And hopefully these last three days of April and this incredible first day of May is a sign that not only will next year be better but this next month will be as well.
The overall mildness of this last winter and early spring has sent things into bloom well ahead of time. And that Dear Reader, along with sunshine, always picks up my spirit.
The wisteria is in full bloom, the apple trees are on the back side of bloom time, the pear and cherry bloom is over, service berry is in full bloom, lilacs are blooming, the tulips are done but the lupine buds are coloring! It was a fragrant heaven stepping out my door this morning!