Planting and Flooding


It’s good to farm on the bluff.

The Vermillion River busted its banks at the first bridge north of town last night and flooded the valley between town and the farm.  As of this afternoon, the road was still open, but it probably won’t be tomorrow (or maybe even tonight).

H called me this afternoon and told me we had to come out and survey his new “beachfront” property.

The line of trees is the river bank.  Or what was the riverbank.  I’ve seen plenty of flooding on other parts of the Vermillion River, but I’ve never seen it flood in our valley.

But, as I said, it’s good to farm on the bluff.

While the valley is inundated, our southwestern slope at the top is high and…well, not dry, but the topmost garden beds were in perfect planting condition this afternoon for the first sowing of peas.  In fact, the first few bulbs of garlic are already poking their shoots through the surface.

I know, I know.  While it’s 60 degrees today, we’re supposed to get rain and then an inch of snow tomorrow.  In my mind, that’s about perfect for this first planting of peas–the snow will act like a germination blanket–melting slowly and keeping the ground moist to swell the seeds and ready them for sprouting.  I won’t even need to water.

Had my son not been with me I likely would’ve gone absolutely planting-crazy this afternoon with the warm temperatures and promise of precip. As it was, I was lucky I remembered my hat and didn’t end up with my first sunburn of the season.

I kept thinking about the potatoes trying to shoot their way out of the paper bags they’re stored in and the greens that would go nuts over this cool (well, kind of cold) and moist stretch of days ahead of us.

But there will be time.  I only planted about half the peas–the other trellis they’re scheduled for is in the lower (more clay-rich) part of the east garden, and that is still too muddy to work (plus it still needs cleaning up from last fall).

Too, I’ve got a new roll of row cover coming from Peaceful Valley that will help protect newly-sown greens from cold temps and animal invaders–as most of my old covers have bit the radish, so to speak, and will probably be donated in usable sections to community gardeners this season.

There’s also much to be done on the homefront–I can certainly start some broccoli and cabbages down in the basement to tide me over.

If nothing else, the fact that the trip to the farm will be an extra several miles for the better part of a week will keep me from getting too nuts while we get the next round of winter that we’ll finally, officially, be able to call spring.

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One response to this post.

  1. Wow! Is that martin?? He’s grown so tall!!
    we will see you soon. hope u r well, xoxox to all of you.

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