Friday, May 10, 2013

growing things

You could say we're working both ends of the weather stick: on the one hand, we're forging ahead with May plantings. On the other had, we're watching with trepidation as the cold front approaches.

Breakfast is in the sun room, but not for reasons of any sunshine. Not today. They said cloudy and cold and they meant it.

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In the meantime, there are cardboard boxes on the porch, waiting, waiting. One has cherry trees, the other has bulk perennials, waiting...

We ignore them. Ed has work, I have work, stuff to do, chores, work chores, all that.

And the skies stay a wimpy gray and the wind makes the air all that much cooler.

Late lunch. I make pb&j sandwiches. Maybe we should plant the trees?  -- this from Ed and he says it not without enthusiasm. As if working in the yard on a cold spring day is a gift. And maybe it is. There isn't the heat of the sun pounding at your back as you dig into the clay soil.

Trees in boxes... Wait, how many? Ed??

I have found his Achilles' heel: planting young trees. Fact is, the man who never likes to buy things, not ever and especially not new things, has in this case overbought. We had four cherries to replace. True. But I'm counting the arrivals and I see eight new ones. Plus four (and I hope only four) additional pears coming in next week. And grapes. Did I tell you we're starting to grow grapes too?

I stare at him now, trying hard to suppress a smile. But, but, they were such a good deal! And look! These are splendid! Tell people on Ocean to buy from Grandpa's Orchard in Michigan!

You might wonder -- what will we do with all the farm produce? We freeze tomatoes, okay, so maybe we can justify planting seventy tomato plants (the seeds were just so... prolific!), but all this fruit -- who'll eat it?

Me, I never can quite imagine that it will come to be in the way that it's supposed to be. You plant more because you'll get less than promised. That's a Polish mindset. Ed plants because he is a fan of growing things. Too much fruit? Not possible. He talks about having a stand by the road with fruits for sale.

Okay, I can see it! I tell him: a pretty little shed maybe? With tags describing the varieties?
Now wait a minute! Let's stay basic: a card table will do!

We're getting ahead of ourselves. At this point, our new orchard is full of sticks. The apples and pears survived last year's drought, but they barely grew. This year's additions are also in the baby stages of tree-dom. Here's a photo of Ed tidying up a planted cherry. (The observant person will notice that we have a wild asparagus stalk growing right at its base!)

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It's not supposed to be extremely cold tonight. The two killer nights (as far as tomatoes go) are tomorrow and the night after. Get us through this weekend and we'll sail home with a smile!

Elsewhere on the farmette, trees are really coming into their best moment of blooms and delicate greens.

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This is truly the month for the sweetest, gentlest petals. All pinks and whites. How can you not fall in love?

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The rains had trampled down a number of daffodils, but that's okay -- it gives me an excuse to bring some home.

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Tomorrow we'll attack the perennials. And we'll build cold weather shields for the sensitive tomatoes. Tomorrow. For now, a supper of our usuals, with asparagus for sure. In the mixture, there are a total of two stalks that we found on the farmette.

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