2017 Spring Garden, A new season and new challenges

Garden - a new season

2017. A new season. Actually, this time of year is when winter chores overlap with spring jobs. We had a fire in the wood stove yesterday afternoon just to take the chill off. Last Sunday we cut some more firewood to stack for next winter and I will do more if we have the chance. It warmed up quick in March and then April was warm and dry so I got some stuff planted and a lot of it is up. But, I made a mistake that may have been avoidable if I had been willing to wait. I planted right before it rained. The ground was working well and it was warming up so I planted some potatoes, onion sets, lettuce, radishes, spinach, and leeks. We then had a big rain and the ground got so hard the seedlings had a hard time getting up through the crust that formed on the surface of the soil. The lettuce and radishes made it up because they came up while the ground was still wet. The spinach did poorly and there are just scattered seedlings that made it up. The onions were slow but they made it. I had to go out and chip the crust over where each potato plant was trying to come through so I could have a good stand of potatoes.

I had some collard plants that wintered over but they are pretty much just going to seed. I think I will try to prevent them from going to seed this year because they can become a problem weed it you don’t watch them. So, after some rain and more warm weather in April I put out some cabbage and broccoli plants. Last year we made sauerkraut from a few cabbages and it was so good we are going to make more this year. I have out 20 cabbage plants and 6 broccoli plants. I planted some more radishes, lettuce, and spinach. We have had a couple of rains on this stuff since I planted it. It is too muddy to go out and look to see if the spinach has come up yet. The cabbage looks good and I have the whole thing surrounded with chicken wire to keep the rabbits out. I also had a guy come with his small tractor and till up an area that I used to garden in years past to give me some more space. If we get rid of our last remaining horse I can expand even more. So, we will see.

So we are off and running with this new season. It seems like it all came up rather quickly. I was winter then all of a sudden it warmed up and things started growing and greening up. The trees are leafed out. The yard has even been mowed once. Asparagus has come up. We don’t have much asparagus left growing. We had a nice patch of it and most of it died off and I don’t know why. We had another big rain Saturday afternoon and everything is wet today and will be wet for a while. It is cool and cloudy so it will not be drying up real quick. But, I have plenty of other things to do, like work on my project on the new porch, but that is for another post.

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