|That's Mizz Tiller to you.|
This morning was sunny and mild and after looking at my rockin' Mother Earth News "when to plant" schedule for Washington state, I realized I better beat an egg out to garden and get some soil/poo tilled under.
The worms and microbes need several weeks to break down the poo and fibrous material, you see, and since I will be planting peas, lettuce and broccoli (hopefully - they are a touch runty right now) in the next 30 days I figured it was a good time.
After wrestling the tot into her sweatshirt (it wasn't that nice out) we exited the dwelling for some good old fashioned tillin'. I figure I've got about 45 minutes, at the most, of Tot Time where she can play by herself before the whining and wild looks start and I know her time is up. So I hustled. Ain't nothing like a 32 year old slightly out of shape woman scurrying around in her pea patch, wrenching the tiller back and forth, back and forth until her arms feel like jelly to really get a person ready for spring. I could work out, but I don't. I don't like to sweat. Hence the jelly arms. I am what I am.
We will have another snowstorm in February, which is how La Nina does it (bitch) but I think that will just about do it for us this season, and I'm ready to PLANT.
I've decided to do squash primarily in tires spread around the perimeter of the patch, mostly because I don't want to give up two beds for them, but also because I can plant earlier in tires, since the sun heats the soil quicker. I'm thinking early May for those and then succession planting. I'm going to intermix borage on the corners of beds and in some pots spread amongst the patch. Also some sweet peas. Because they are sweet and pretty and I have two packs of them.
I've started my onions and (runty) broccoli, and will start another flat of onions this weekend so I can succession plant those little bastards as well. I got onion sets from the nursery last year and if it wasn't for my substandard, heavy rocky soil, I think I could've had success. This year I amended heavily with fibrous material (straw and leaves) and manure (that was one of my cow manure beds) so I'm hoping this crop will get bigger and bolder than last year.
I also found cilantro and dill in my seed packets, so those bad boys will get started and cultivated under grow lights in the next couple of weeks before I transplant the babies outside.
Also, and splendidly, tomatoes will be started indoors in the next couple of weeks. I had much success with starting tomatoes from seed last year and can't wait to do it again this year. I did not do so well with staking and the weather didn't do so well with, you know, warmth, but all in all I'm jazzed for this new season. Even if we will exit the home before the full harvest is in.
The GM once told me that she would just "make a garden wherever I went" and that it was a continual process for her - and sometimes she had to leave gardens she really loved. The GM, as you may recall, can look nicely at something and it will grow instantly. She has a degree in botany, so....But that really helped me during a time late last year when I was stymied by the garden and our unsure future home plans. Then I realized I needed to think about my favorite quote - "get busy living or get busy dying" and just get going. The joy is in the process, not the destination.
So the VP, the Lindsey and the Tot got going. And now my beds look *almost* ready for planting.
*I in no way endorse the "drill baby drill" ethic that suits, bureaucrats and hillbillies try to sell to people who are either too stupid or too tired to understand what a bad fucking idea it is. I cannot fathom how destroying the environment for a nominal amount of gas or oil that all scientists agree would last us about 2 years can possibly be a good idea. It leaves me in awe that those same suits, bureaucrats and hillbillies don't understand that investing time, money and energy in renewable clean fuel (NOT COAL) is going to save our lives, the lives of our children and the only planet we have found, so far, that can sustain life.