A Little Bit of Spring

It is 61 degrees this afternoon in Newburyport, and tomorrow it is supposed to be even warmer. Spring! It's sometimes hard to jump into gardening tasks in just the couple hours of daylight I have left when I get home from work (especially when there's an activity to drive a kid to in the middle of that time period), so today I just took a quick tour around the garden. Tomorrow I should be able to actually get something done. In the meantime, here's what there is to see:

Our fruit trees are starting to bud! This is one of the apples, but they are all looking good. As you can see, there is a bit of snow from last week left in the yard, but I expect that to be gone tomorrow — it's not supposed to drop below 40 tonight.

In the perennial border, we have our first official flower: a little Siberian squill. Only one of its several flower buds has opened, but I say it still counts. 

I also came home to an open cold frame. Good thing Kirk remembered to open it before he went to work, or we'd have some cooked greens in there. Above is what is left of our over-wintered kale (in the back) and mache (in the front). 

And here is the spinach that we kept over the winter. There is new growth here — I planted this in October, and they were very tiny when we cleaned the garden up for winter. I don't think the cold frame will be closed over these things again. In fact, we will probably move the cold frame to another bed to get some early salad greens, radishes, and carrots started this weekend.

Another item that looks to have come through our unusually mild winter with no trouble is the garlic. I had mulched these with leaves since they are a somewhat tender Mediterranean variety, but the mulch on this section blew off (despite the netting), and these shoots look just fine. Like the spinach, I doubt that the garlic needs any further protection as we head into the equinox.

This all reads a bit like a report card or a to-do list, I think, but what I'm not getting across is how utterly perfect it was to be back outside in the sunshine and warm, fresh air. When the breeze picked up, you could smell the hay fields across the street and fresh earth from our own garden beds. Everything was exactly as it should be, and there was nothing else outside of our fence that mattered. Of course I know that by Friday it will be colder again, and that real life will push in around the edges. 

But not today.


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