Thursday, April 27, 2017

What about all the Vegetables?

We started our seeds this year in two beautiful light boxes designed and built by the innovative farmer with whom I share my life.  The boxes are outfitted with full spectrum lights and the doors may be closed to get seeds to sprout, or left slightly ajar for air flow.  We also have used the top surface for plants to get natural light in the south facing windows. 

Now that the days are warming, 
the seedlings spend a few hours on the deck each day, "hardening off,"
 in preparation for being planted in the soil,
a process which we will begin in May.

In the meantime, a few crops are already producing in the garden.
We have not yet picked rhubarb, but I can almost smell the first old-fashioned "crumble" coming from the oven as the stalks grow with impressive speed and vigor.

I have nibbled a couple of stalks of asparagus, and will be making Lemon Asparagus Pickles, and asparagus soup, and tossing raw asparagus in salads, any day now. In fact, for a few quick weeks, it will seem like our menu is "All Asparagus, All the Time."  And just as we get tired of that, the strawberries will begin to ripen, and the garlic scapes to appear.

Speaking of garlic, the five rows that we planted last fall are thriving.  They are approaching a foot tall, as I write this, and are green and strong.  A late frost may yellow up the tips of the leaves, as it has in past years, but it should not damage the bulbs which, even now, are developing beneath the straw mulch and the rich soil.

Not only is the garden waking with the fragrant onset of spring,
so too are the honey bees.  
There is a wild swarm that took up residence in a vacated hive last year 
that we had stacked behind the pole barn.  

They are an easy-going crew of workers that mostly ignore the people on the farm.

Not much is blooming yet, so I am glad 
that the dandelions began to bloom about the same time the hive awoke.

Where ever you are, whatever the weather, I wish you joy.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

(Nearly) Wordless Wednesday - On the Farm Today














The Farm Hands

Coffee Bean

Henny Penny

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Sunday Stroll - Greening Up

In the herb garden,
grape hyacinth are blooming,

just a few feet from golden daffodils.

In the front yard, nestled in close to the house,
sunny squills are blooming pale and delicate,

at the edge of a sprawling patch of old-fashioned myrtle,
now bursting into bloom.

In the garden,
the purple tips of the first few spears of asparagus
are pushing up through the earth,

while rhubarb,

horse radish.

and chamomile thrive nearby, 
greening up and growing quickly 
with the first hints of warmth.

All around, the yellow cheer of early dandelions is emerging.
I am happy to see them,
and it seems I am in good company.

Wherever you are, whatever the weather, I wish you good cheer!

Hop on over to the Steve's blog, Out on the Prairie, to stroll through the tulips!

Sunday Stroll Invitation

Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, 
places to play in and pray in, 
where nature may heal and give strength to body and soul. 
~ John Muir

Will you get out and walk today, in the fresh air, while the birds sing and the flowers yearn toward the sun?  Will you, rather, dodge rain drops and storm clouds and take shelter beneath a wide-armed tree or a generous overhang?  

I shall do one or the other.  There are clouds threatening and a light breeze, but some patchy blue in the sky and a bright sprawl of light through the clouds where the sun should be. 

 If you do take a stroll today, and if you are inclined to share photos of your walk on your blog, please post here and I will add you to a list of strollers.  Would love to see a long list of strollers, as I used to post in the early days of this blog! 

It's Tulip Time Out on the Prairie.  You don't want to miss all the color and detail in Steve's tulip stroll!

quote from:

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Sunday Stroll - New Growth

"Look closely.  The beautiful may be small."
~ Immanuel Kant

Beneath the blushing canopy of maple buds,
through the wet mass of last autumn's leaves,
new growth is rising.

Plush new leaves of silvery mullein,

and spikes of dandelion greens,

rise near cucumber-scented burnet,

and the feathery first leaves of Queen Anne's Lace.

The already thorny rosette of thistle swells near the swamp,

while field daisies push up through vibrant moss,

along side wild strawberry,

and sweet clover.

The moss grew slowly through winter,
and is lush and verdant in the early days of spring.

Tiny bugles of lichen celebrate the arrival
of warmer air and silky fog;
Spring has nestled in to the woodland.

Wherever you are, whatever the weather, I wish you joy.