Friday, April 8, 2011

April in New England

April in the garden in New England takes a little imagination, but that’s never been a problem for me! I’ve been horribly excited this week, as the first of all those bulbs I planted along the driveway last fall are starting to pop up here and there. I even went so far as to tear away the leaves and other debris from the beds (even clawing away remaining bits of snow) the better to encourage their progress.

And now that we’ve had consistently warmer weather for the past week or so they are really doing well. By warmer weather I mean highs in the forties and fifties in the afternoons. Its still in the twenties when we wake up in the morning! I have little yellow and blue crocus blooming, some grape hyacinth peeking up, and other things that are still too small for me to be sure what they are. I have markers and I also have a map I made so I could figure it out if I wanted to, but at this point I don’t really care; I’m just happy to see them.

It’s been such a long, long winter. We even had three wet cold inches of snow last week, but it melted quickly. We still have several big piles of snow around the house, but they are a lot smaller than they used to be. The bushes that they buried don’t show signs of life, yet. I wonder if they survived?

Remember this little flower from last spring? Now that I’ve been taking classes at the New England Wildflower Center I was hoping that I could identify it, using my copy of Newcombs. Unfortunately its leaves aren’t big enough yet for me to be sure, except to think that it must be in the dandelion family, and it MIGHT be Coltsfoot.
Harper and I pried the top off the compost bin today. I ended up with a wheelbarrow full of beautiful black compost. I removed the tarp from my garden and spread the compost lovingly, and then raked it in. Tomorrow it’s time to plant lettuce, spinach, radishes, arugula, beets and Swiss chard. A cold snap or two, sure to occur here before warmer weather comes to stay, won’t hurt these plants. They like cool weather.

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