Wednesday, June 20, 2012
Midnight in the Garden of Good and Weedy
When I asked for rain to help my garden grow and make it possible to take a break from toting hoses around, I didn't have this in mind, not exactly. I know I said, 'Never ever be afraid to work in the rain', but I have to draw some lines when it comes to thunder and lightning. There's been an intermittent rumbling of thunder for two days now, and all I've been able to do is rescue the last of my peonies from drowning. Part of a birch tree, that I thought was healthy, is now lying on the edge of the cabin roof. It's messed with the tin just a bit, but I really need to think it over, how I'm going to accomplish its removal. I know it will require another person just to keep an eye on me, to keep me from doing something stupid. You don't take your eyes off the tree and you better know where's its going. My grandfather learned that the hard way, at a lumber camp in Wisconsin way back around the turn of the last century.
In the meantime, my flower gardens, which have already been less attended to than is the accepted norm, are sprouting new... let's just call them plants. Once known as weeds, I have taken to seeing them in a new light. The gardens are now officially known as, "The Place of a Thousand Butterflies." I have never before (before the rain, anyway) seen so many butterflies. They're everywhere, of all colors and sizes. I'd rather have butterflies than a "weed-free" garden. Much rather. So, why is it that weeds, which almost without fail produce some type of flower, are seen as producing inferior flowers? How can there possibly be an inferior flower? Is there something I'm missing? Anyway, I'm learning to live with myself. If the occasional visitor looks askance at them, well, they can just get over it.
Out at the vegetable garden, not entirely weed-free either, but very presentable and healthy, the potential produce is coming on strong. Besides the potatoes, parsnips, and sugar-snap peas, which I mentioned in a post earlier this spring, I will have onions, radishes, carrots, beets, and kohlrabi. Also, cucumbers, zucchini, winter squash and cantaloupe. Can't wait for the cantaloupe. It's looking good, proverbial fingers are crossed.
I'm also happy to report that the neighbors, who have two really nice root cellars, have declared my basement will work just fine, not too moist and yet cool enough to keep things well into the fall and possibly the early winter. The root cellar out by the shed was used in the past when the basement was Otis's workshop in the winter, Otis being the man who created this place out of the woods, but no point in having things so far away now, especially when the snow flies. It is nice to know it's there, though. Anyway, I won't have enough this year requiring longer storage, but there's always next year. I would like to reach the point where I'm growing most of my own food.
I've decided not to raise chickens, not yet, anyway, as I get all the fresh eggs I want from the farm across the bridge. The difference between store bought and farm fresh is like night and day. I like mine sunny-side up. Which reminds me of my father, who liked to use diner lingo whenever we went to a cafe, especially at breakfast. He would order his "over easy and stepped on." When I was a very young girl, I never knew whether to be embarrassed or pleased. Now, that's an easy one.
It might be fun, though, to raise animals again, in a conscientious and loving way. A lot of work, but fun. Which reminds me: if you'd like some daily news about what's right in this world, I recommend you read this: practicingresurrection.wordpress.com. Bill and Cherie (she has also done wonderful work in Haiti), have White Flint Farm. They are two people who are truly making a difference.
BTW: I love the name Bill chose for his blog, which comes from a really great poem by Wendell Berry, "Manifesto: the Mad Farmer Liberation Front." If you're not already familiar with it, you can read it here: teresaevangeline.blogspot.com/2011/03/songs-that-are-to-come.html
Paintings by Herman Herzog (1832 - 1932): "Country Cabin, Summer" and "Making Hay While the Sun Shines."