Tuesday, January 26, 2016
Yes, I know, winter officially just started a few weeks ago....but I am already craving Spring. Every day I walk past my garden....sometimes pausing to just look at the " mess" I have in there. Last summer ended quickly, fall crept up and slapped me in the head and said.. " your gardening days are over for the year" We didn't have a fantastic garden year....and actually we barely had a garden at all. The summer was a lot cooler and wetter than "normal" My poor tomato plants struggled all year to put fruit on...and then to ripen. No, we didn't have a great year. I was able to squeeze out enough to get us through the winter...and early spring. Heck, I might even have enough to get us through a good part of this upcoming summer on some things. Tomato products are one of the things I had to buy from the grocer. Luckily, I was able to! Every year I tell myself... " THIS year I am going to be a bit more vigilant with the garden" And of course, by late summer...I realize I am falling behind, then make a mad dash to get caught up. But..... THIS YEAR....I will be more vigilant! HAHA! The last few days I have been craving strawberries. ANYTHING strawberry...as I walk through the grocery store...I am drawn to strawberry "flavored" foods. Breakfast rolls....cereals...ice cream...call to me. My mind drifts off to the strawberry patch outside my window....the plants laying dormant under the snow....just waiting to wake up and start growing, blooming, and putting on big, red, juicy STRAWBERRIES! Then I cringe with the thoughts of the work I have to do out there before that will be possible. Towards the end of the season last year, like many of us, the weeds took hold and took over. *sigh* Oh, but I have grand plans for that strawberry patch this year. I have a HUGH pile of composting material from the barn...sitting out there cooking away...ready to put in the rows and around the plants after I lay down a good layer of cardboard. Then a bit of panic sets in as I remember that the mobile vegetable stand I planned to build last year...didn't get built. I MUST get that finished this year since I am pretty sure we will be over run with strawberries this year. We started out with a tiny patch about 4 ft x 4 ft....and it was producing between 4 to 6 quarts a day. Now we have 5 rows about 30 ft long.....plus the 4 x 4 area. Yes, I plan to have enough to barter or sell. The big difference this year is I have a job now...and time will be precious. I need to get busy building that mobile vegetable stand before my time is consumed by working in the gardens. It will not be a large stand....I am thinking something about 4 x 6 or maybe 4 x 8. I have a small metal frame garden cart that has been sitting in the weeds for the last couple of years. I will build the stand over this cart so I can pull it with the lawn tractor to the front of the property and be able to move it for mowing and to be able to " put it away" for winter. Wish me luck! I have already been " plotting " out the garden layout. Dreaming of the warm sun...the smell of fresh turned dirt...then I am jolted from that daydream by the crackling of the wood stove, I sigh and go put another log on the fire. For now I will continue to plan...dream...because before I know it, it will be planting time and I will be rushing around trying to get things done. It happens every year...and ever year I tell myself... " NOT this time, I will be ready"! HA! How about you? Does your spring go as planned or are you caught in a mad dash to get things planted like me?