Thursday, March 26, 2009

Spring gardening

When I lived in Birmingham, I couldn't wait until February because I knew this was the month to get out in my rather large garden and start turning the soil. I had read that potatoes were OK to plant then and plant I did for several years with good returns. The rest of the spring garden would have to wait until after Good Friday or the middle of April when the last threat of frost had past.

Now that I am living in New Jersey, I usually have to wait about a month longer to get outside and get my taters in. We had some beautiful weather last weekend and I couldn't resist whipping the garden into shape, getting out there Saturday afternoon. It actually whipped me and am rather glad that I have a small plot to hoe these days. I planted a single row of red potatoes and will have to wait for the plants to emerge and and their tops to flower before digging into the soil with my gardening pitchfork to see what has materialized underneath. Planting them is easy and I used store bought potatoes, cutting them into fourths, making sure each section has an eye where it will sprout roots and several potatoes.

I expanded my "recession" garden to just a bit larger than last year. Apparently from what I have read, I am following a national trend. It is, I'd say, about seven feet by 10 feet and is by the coal shoot of the house. Whenever I am digging in this space I always find small chunks of coal. They are easy to spot because its surface shines in the sun unlike other rocks. I have quite the collection of coal now that I save, clean and place in a container in the kitchen which holds my potted African violets. I can't imagine living in a time when house furnaces burned coal and how dirty the air must have been, especially in a tightly housed community like ours. I wonder if the air was dimmed with the soot.

So, I am finally writing about gardening on this gardening blog. Tis the season, finally!


jbranch said...

Such a fun time of year. I have many hostas coming up, but I have many that are fully leafed out. Hydrangeas are doing well and no late frost in the forcast, so I am keeping my fingers crossed that I will get some good blooms on my hydrangeas this year.

Jersey Knitting Mama said...

I will be gardening for the first time this year. Finally got myself a yard. I have to figure where I'll get the most sun.

Hmmm,potatoes...does that need a lot of sun light?