Dreaming of My Garden and Planting Tulips
We went out snowshoeing the other day and I walked past my garden. It was buried under about two and a half feet of snow but I could still see it in my mind. The polls, trellis, and stakes poked up through the snow reminding me that spring will come again. The trellis in particular caught my eye and my mind wandered, thinking of what variety of climbing peas to plant this spring.
This is the time of year when you get restless looking out your window. I personally start to swoon when my seed catalogs come in the mail and I almost always start a few plants indoors because I just can’t wait anymore! When snow drifts are at window level, we get in Vermont what is called “cabin fever.” We basically get stir-crazy. The snow is too deep for cross-country skiing or even snowshoeing. The weather too cold and windy for any walking or running (though who really does that anyway) on the roads. We start wearing the same sweatpants and sweatshirts every night and sometimes we don’t even change out of them during the weekends. We want to go out and see friends but it is too damn cold so we stay inside and dream of our gardens.
Reading all these seed catalogs and books on gardening got me itching to play in the dirt. Luckily a friend gave me some tulip bulbs over the weekend and I set to potting them for a little spring greenery in my home. I pulled out a bag of potting soil from the shed and warmed it up in the house for a day. I was almost giddy when I used my hands to fill the pots with the dirt. The tulip bulbs my friend gave me are going to be a complete surprise as it was both a color and breed variety pack!
Recently I’ve been reading books about gardening and chicken raising. They tend to have a double effect on me. On one hand these books give me wonderful ideas and help me learn and better plan for the coming spring. On the other hand they make me a little depressed when I’m reading about canning tomatoes and there is three feet of snow outside! One book I just finished which was fabulous is Harriet Fasenfest’s A Householder’s Guide to the Universe. Her sense of humor shines through this book that goes into personal struggles and triumphs as well as a good look at what it takes to be a homesteader in your own backyard.
I used to keep garden journals when I first started gardening. These journals were my “go-to” book for looking back on where I planted things, what worked well and what needed a different space or different growing method. I have since let the journaling go but after reading Fasenfest’s book, I got a little creative with an old notebook and starting journaling again.
Actually, Fasenfest makes some great arguments for keeping a journal and it was a good reminder of why I used to keep one. I already starting planning out my seed and starter list as well as drew a plan for when planting season finally arrives in Vermont!