Saturday, March 31, 2012

Garden Qi

It is unseasonably warm here as it is most places in the US right now. I've been looking forward to Spring since December and suddenly spring is upon us and throbbingly green and almost past. Last year I learned the term "spring ephemerals", the woodland perennial wildflowers and other plants that emerge early in the season, bloom, and then give way to the hot weather species. There are many of these at the park where I walk (trillium, solomon's seal, blood root, and so on). I think of them fondly. They mark the time.

Asparagus doesn't qualify as a woodland perennial, but its appearance is equally early and exciting. After two years of patiently not harvesting the stalks coming up in our yard, this year I got to enjoy several spears. The plants have since rocketed into full growth (up to 4' tall already) and will provide some visual height and contrast in the summer garden. Other good friends thriving (or trying to bolt) in the garden now: chard, bok choy, mustard greens, collards-- all flowering now, a beet left to go to seed, and an overwintered rainbow chard. Tiny beets are coming up and I hope for nasturtium success this year. It is the best time of the year when the weather is warming, but not hot and there is plenty of rain and everything seems manageable and fresh.