HomeUncategorizeda green report for st. patrick

It’s become, in a matter of days, the time of year when I don’t bother to wash my jeans when they’re dirty, but just wear them over and over again. This is because washing them would be totally futile. Moving rocks, spreading wood chips in the garden paths, weeding, transplanting–all these activities are earthy, make me earthy, and make my jeans earthy. This means that the aforementioned pair of jeans will be retired from any respectable use, but since I’m not so much into respectability, what it really means is that they are moving into a whole new level of comfort. Worn-in, garden-kissed, frayed-knees, clay-butt comfort.

It’s also the time of year when misplacing a pair of gloves can bring a whole train of events to a screeching halt. I’ve gotten better about this, having settled on one pair of “womenswork gloves,” broken in well, small enough for my small hands. They have three possible resting places: the drawer in my bedside table, the bucket in the utility room, or my back pocket. If they aren’t in any of those places, then I’ve absentmindedly laid them down somewhere, which is what I did this afternoon while loading rocks out of the garden and wood chip mulch in.

I was excited to see that my “Lucille Ball” Alliums were all sprouting leaves–some of them last year looked as if they might be fading. In about six weeks I’ll have globes of purple flowers. Maybe sooner! My plum tree is taking her clue from the continuing cold nights and holding off on her bursting into bloom. The daffodils I transplanted look really good–like most of them will bloom this year despite the traumatic experience of being dug up, shoved in a huge bag, carted around in the back of my car, peed on by my brother’s dog, and exposed to snow and bitter winds before finally being re-planted. Their little buds are swelling, and yellower every day. I love flowers.

Not much else seems to be happening in the garden, but a closer look reveals that peony eyes are peeking red out of the soil.  Extravagant  peonies!  They seem such an impossibility with not a lick of green on the trees!  The lupine is definitely going for the gusto with bunches of leaves already, some nipped and curled by the cold. The bee balm is everywhere, tiny leaves spread into mats. Last year I relocated a bunch, because it had spread so thickly, but this year I’m just going to be making bee balm tea. Speaking of tea, the lemon balm is making her way with a mat of small green leaves, and the comfrey is already spreading. Also making a small showing are the lungwort, poppies,  wild geranium, catnip, and columbine. Did I mention that I love flowers?

Time to plant lettuce.

Oh, wild North Wind, linger on the ridges if you must, but spare my plum tree this year.

tiny columbine leaves


a green report for st. patrick — 7 Comments

  1. I am jealous of your garden! When I lived in New York and had a garden behind my brownstone, I had tons of Columbine. I LOVE Columbine.

    I live in a very hot part of Southern California (Sunset 9) and they just won’t thrive here. I miss them… And Hostas too.

    By the way… I keep my gloves on the hose reel or when I leave a shovel in the earth, I keep them middle finger up on the handle.

    I’m staring at my flowering pear trying to coax it into bloom.

  2. loving your green machine up there. it’s getting cold here tonight, and it will on up into may. oh, i want everything bursting forth– our forsythia’s just got the teeniest buds as of today. i feel like i’m all sicky and missing it, but then it turned grey and overcast, so i did too. loving your gardenworks and envying your comfrey. it’s something i want to try this year. glad your daffydills are okay. only 2 of ours are what i’d call *blooming* whilst down the road they’re out en masse. *grrr* when will spring hit otter creek? (i’ll regret this come august;-0)

    you go garden woman workglover!

  3. How well I remember last year’s freeze. 🙁 still makes me sad. And there was a hard freeze about seven years ago on MAY 30th!!!! So I don’t want everything bursting forth, not yet, it’s just not safe yet, but oh, flowers, flowers, flowers. The buzz of bees! The rustle of leaves!

    I’m sorry you’ve been sickish! I bet I could put some comfrey in a box and mail it to you and it would grow in the box. It’s blue comfrey–smaller leaved and with prettier flowers that bloom for longer periods. Just stick is somewhere it can have all to itself, which is not what I did. And now it’s too late. If I dug it all up it would come back with more! That’s what makes it such good medicine. 🙂

  4. Don’t be jealous of my garden! Not yet at least! I broke my arm last summer and it became a jungle of weeds and grass, which I’m just now dealing with. I’ve a lot of work to do, but I will be sure to photograph the columbine and post it here for you. I’ll probably plant more this year, since I think I’m down to one plant. I’ve run across wild columbine before, just driving along the Blue Ridge Parkway. If I find some this year I’ll probably paint them. But what I really want to find in the wildflower world are yellow ladyslippers. Wowzers, what a flower.

    Well, it may be hot in your part of Cali, but just think, you don’t have to worry about your pear getting sniped by frost. We had a terrible killing freeze last year. My friends who have an entire hillside planted in blueberries got three blueberries last year. Very sad, in a missed blueberry kind of way.

  5. If we only had sun in our yard, instead of massive amounts of shade . . .

    I’m hopeful that a few small potted herbs might be possible this year. Last year, I tried potted basil. Just not enough sun for more than an hour a day to make it worthwhile. And the city raccoons love to dig up potted plants (until Jay peed around the pot, which put an end to the marauding).


    Coming to you from L’ville, home of yet another thunderstorm.

  6. Those city raccoons! I bet you have three times as many raccoons per square mile than I, at least! Possums, too, I’d bet.

    There are lots of benefits to shade, and you could grow hostas and ferns and forest plants…trilliums and bloodroot and cohosh…

    I’d love to be a landscape architect, you know, on the side, with my extra time…

  7. LOL Yes, possums too.

    I don’t like hostas. Seriously. Ferns are a possibility. At some point, we’re going to get a small bulldozer in and rip out the nasty crap that runs along the right side of the driveway, and make a place for sitting and enjoying the evenings. Put up a little bit of privacy fencing. Plant shade loving flowers and such. Actually *do* something.

    But first . . . the house.

    You have extra time??? 😉

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