Sunday, February 7, 2016

February Gardening

So today was a very productive day for me I wonder if I hit my 10k steps yet... I love Texas because NOW is when I can start to garden.  Yippie!

Unbelievably my Winter garden is still going. I have managed to cover it every frosty night, and the lettuce is happy... The onion sets and that tiny row of radishes were planted in January. I have been so blessed by my garden.  Being able to eat what I'm growing as well as having it produce all winter long yippie I didn't kill it.  Lettuce has always been an elusive plant for me in the Lone Star State. I always plant it too late in the spring. This time the September planting has been producing as a cut and come again all winter.  Happy Happy Happy!
 Last week 6 new babies came to roost under our roof. So far only one of these chickies has a name.  The one on the wooden board is called Queenie because she is always at the top of the brooder surveying all she can see. If I find a cricket she snaps it up and runs allover the place trying to eat it all by herself. She is of course chased by all the other chicks.  Today I was holding her and a cricket crawled up my pant leg. He had no chance once she saw it she pounced and almost got away from me.  I don't know why but she is my favorite.
Here I have started my peppers and tomatoes I bought a bunch of heirloom seed samples I can't wait to see if they grow.  Every other year I have tried, I have failed. This year I plan on having a huge garden and My friend CM is going to come play and grow with me. I figure if I actually plant more than 2 plants I might succeed with a few.  I figure if I start getting horn worms I'll run the chickens in the tomato patch, or eew gross pick them off and feed them to the chickens.

 I got a head start on beets and carrots. we will see if these seeds germinate.  I have orange and yellow carrots and those beets that are striped inside. My swiss chard is also still happy I keep cutting it back and I keep getting new growth. The garden is such a peaceful place for me. It grounds me, calms me, frees me. There is something so inherently beautiful in planting, watering, and harvesting. Eating the product of your garden, it tastes better because you knew all the steps that brought about your harvest. All the failures that went before, the tomatoes eaten overnight by rats, the leaves devastated by horn worms in previous years are forgotten in the moment of harvest. Each year is unique you never know what will grow well or what will fail... with the exception of cherry tomatoes which always grow in profusion and in the worse  year manage to produce tiny red globes of deliciousness.  I still remember convincing a child who hated tomatoes. She had never had anything but hot house tomatoes. I gave her Yellow Russian Pear tomatoes, she loved them.  Tomatoes from the garden taste so much better than anything from the store.

Years ago I house sat for a friend in the 90's. I found a pile of Iris's in the North corner of the lot. They were in a dark place and did not bloom.  My friend said they never had bloomed for her.  Can you picture the bemused look on my face? They were in the wrong place. I dug them up and moved them to the south side along the drive way. As I dug I found rhizome after rhizome.  They bloomed like mad the following year.   I split them and took them with me to my house in Rochester. I shared them with my neighbors and I had to leave them behind when I moved to Texas.

Today I found a patch of Iris's on our property stuck in a back corner. I dug them up and moved them. Now they are in a bright sunny spot where they can brighten my life as well as those passing by. Hopefully they will bloom this year.  I was having flashbacks to the 90's and being happy it is as if God is restoring the things I lost when I moved to Texas to serve him. God is good.