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Garden journal entry


March 10, 2013. What a wonderful weekend we just had! Temperatures into the fifties, a bit of sun, not much wind – there were no excuses not to be outside. And so I was, for most of the weekend. Not all of it gardening – my new hobby of cycling must be indulged as well, of course – but at least I made some inroads on garden cleanup. First I hacked away at the lifeless remains of last year's driveway bed, which combined with the family Christmas tree in the utility trailer I purchased last year as a replacement for the pickup truck. The truck, which had hauled many a load of compost, mushroom soil, and mulch in the years I owned it, had started to develop more problems than I wished to keep up with, so it finally had to go. I'm still getting used to a trailer (give me a wide berth when I'm trying to back up!), but I think it will be a good trade-off in the end. So yesterday it made its inaugural run to the township recycling center to dispose of the first load of cleanup debris (and that Christmas tree, of course). Then I turned my sights on the vegetable garden. We have ambitions (as we do many years, to be perfectly honest) to harvest more than usual from our vegetable garden this year, by making sensible choices about what to grow, and by keeping the undesired inhabitants under control. While those less desired things include charming reseeders such as dill and red perilla, the biggest problems are infestations of bindweed and mugwort. What better time to get a head start on their removal than now, before their leaves start feeding their underground root systems? So I dug a good part of the garden, carefully removing the brittle white bindweed rhizomes wherever I found them, along with the darker-colored creeping root systems of the mugwort. They'll be back for sure, but I feel good having had the first strike this year. And amid all of that digging, I spotted the first flowers of the year! Not on an on-purpose plant, though – the cheerful blue flowers belonged to a patch of weedy ground veronica that had also colonized the vegetable garden. I left them in place for now – you can't get cross with a plant that smiles at you even before the hellebores do (well, OK, they're blooming too, but I hadn't paid attention to them yet). Eventually of course they'll fall to my weeding efforts as well, when beets, lettuce, or cabbage need to be planted. But for now, they can stay.

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Last modified: September 09, 2009
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