Finally Spring

We hit 65 degrees yesterday–the first time it has ventured above the high 50s this spring. I spent the bulk of the day out in the gardens prepping new beds, watering (Harry turned the well on), and cleaning up.

I didn’t do any planting yesterday, though I did bring the Italian red bottle onions out to transplant–probably today. Also on today’s agenda–spring turnips, beets, carrots, and perhaps some rapini.

Some of these crops will need floating row cover (an organic grower’s best friend), and the wind yesterday made laying and securing the lightweight spun polyester covers pretty much impossible.

I’ll need to dig all those lengths of fabric out of the barn, lay them out, and trim them up–taking out the holey sections and saving shorter lengths in a different pile. Then I can see what sections of row cover fit which areas of the garden (the rows in the west, middle, and eastern gardens are of different lengths), and mark them with a sharpie.

The shorter lengths will be stashed for smaller plantings, and any landscape staples still attached to any of the covers will be carefully removed and boxed.

I used the midweight Agribon covers in my garden–they give a little frost protection (down to about 26 degrees) without blocking out too much light. But my use of the covers is more about insect protection, wind protection, and keeping the soil surface soft and moist for emerging seedlings.

Harry made an interesting comment about spring on the farm–he said, as he surveyed his own massive projects, that yesterday was the day after last fall left off. In other words–yesterday was the first day we could take full stock of where we had to stop outside work last year, and start up again as if it had been the day before.

Last fall, I had meant to clean up more and bring in the frost protection blankets, had meant to get more beds prepped, had meant to get the row covers better organized–but between the final harvests and the snow, cold, and end-of-season exhaustion, those chores that couldn’t get done had to wait for the other side of winter.

They were incredibly patient.


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