Wednesday, May 21, 2014


Within the hidden courtyard of the farmette (see yesterday's post), secrets abound. The morning walk to open the chicken coop for the day revealed just a few. There are more. I'm sure of it.

But I can't say I am enthusiastic about getting up. Storms rumbled through late at night and, on top of this, Ed and I unintentionally strayed into some topic of conversation (possibly concerning mosquitoes, but I can't really recall now) that kept us going for a couple of nightly hours and so by 5:30, I am more tired than rested.

And yet, when I step outside into that misty world of heavy and heady lilac scented air, any reluctance to be up falls to the wayside.

It is a gorgeous morning.


In the later morning, I finally harvest our rhubarb. I hadn't planted it: it came with the farmhouse. And it really delivers!


In past years, I'd use only a small portion, but this year I'm motivated. What we don't want for now, I'll turn into rhubarb jam for winter peanut butter sandwiches. But today, I'm just making compote.


I cook it with Flower Factory honey (my favorite local perennial grower used to be a beekeeper in his previous incarnation) and then whip it up with Kefir for our porch breakfast.


You really feel spoiled when you watch the May sunshine throw zigzag patterns on the screen panels as you sip your rhubarb-honey-kefir coctail.  So spoiled that getting going takes a bit of an effort.


But we manage! The heat of the day (again in the 80s, though with a breeze today) keeps the chickens out of our path as they hide in the coolest and shadiest spots. Ed and I have three replacement trees to put in and this time Ed is ready with protective cages. It takes the hens a while to figure out that yes, we are digging and yes, there may be worms.


But they retire to the shade soon after.


We go on to plant more beans as well as peas along the newly built trellises.


The planting job's not done. We're missing a packet of sugar snap peas and I change my mind about the corn seeds and so we (happily, I have to admit; it's hot in the sun!) abandon planting in mid afternoon and retire to the coolness of the farmhouse for a nap.

That would end my account here, except that my thoughts and my camera file take me back to this morning. You know, when there were secrets to discover. For example, on my to do list there were the dead grape branches I was going to remove from the walls of the sheep shed. But no, it can't be done. Because in poking around there, I found this:


And, too, I began snipping off some of the spent daffodil flower heads. Had to stop that as well. Because of him:


I was less thrilled to see that this guy has stealthily returned to my garden:


He eats any number of flower leaves with a fury, outperforming even the chickens in the amount of damage to the flower beds. I remind myself that the yard is to be shared. I admonish him for hitting on the daylillies last night and then I turn away.

I'll leave you with just two or three additional morning photos. Those early images really stayed with me today. As you glance at them, think of a moment when the drops of rain still hang from lilac branches, even as the mist is lifting and the skies turn a pale morning blue. Yeah, heavenly.