Sunday, March 20, 2011

Welcome Spring!

Well, today was the end of winter and start of spring and we celebrated with yard and garden work! We had a fire and a sacrifice(!) for the earth goddess. But more about that in a bit...

I checked on the indoor seeds first thing today. I was excited to see that the romaine is up, so the others won't be long now.

I spent most of the day outside. I did a bunch of raking around the patio and two raised beds. There were a lot of leaves since the Japanese Maple hung onto them so long last season that we never did rake them up in the fall. The herb bed doesn't look like much as there was a lot of winter kill and the green shoots coming back are very short so far. There is some chamomile, parsley, oregano, thyme, sage, lavender and tiny sweet strawberries alive at the moment, but more will come up and I'll fill in any of the holes with seedlings later on. The rosemary, for example, will be replaced as it died. Soon, I will top dress all this area with bark mulch which will neaten it up a lot.

I put all the leaves in the big compost bin to rot into nice soil. I moved all the large bits of compost from the smaller bin to the big bin and spread the new soil out on the garden. As I lifted up the bin at the end, a large rodent shot out of the dirt! I shrieked and pointed and Jeff let go of the tiller and took off after the beast and stomped on it...hence the sacrifice part of the story. We must have looked quite a sight. After he finished it off, I was hugging and kissing him with happiness that a garden pest was dealt with! Normally, I have a very 'live and let live attitude', but NOT in my garden concerning pests! Thankfully I got the bin contents dug around and they are not a happy home for anything now.

Jeff spread lime and fertilizer on the garden and burnt one of the brush piles.

We are excited when the tiller starts on the first try in spring! Then we stand and look at it while it runs for a few minutes to warm up. That's the ritual.

After the preparations were done, we were ready to plant the peas. Here are the packets showing the varieties we are using this year.

Furrows were hoed.

Saffy, looking very Eyore-ish here. She didn't like the chicken wire that was spread on the ground in front of her. She prefers to be right at ones heels while work is getting done. We have to be careful not to step back onto a paw!

Saffy posed by the peas when we finished planting and putting up the support fences.

Since she was such a big help she got lots of tummy rubs...

and face rubs...

Silas mainly just wanted to try to chew the handle off the red ball. He had one of his seizures yesterday and it was pretty bad, but you can see he is fine today. Fortunately they are pretty rare, not too long and he recovers quickly after. Saffy was a good girl yesterday and barked to let me know something was wrong, so I was able to go help steady Silas.

It's a little too early to fill it with water, but we did get the doggie pool out of the barn. We'll have to clean it up a little, but you can see Saffy is excited already!

It felt really good to be outside in the sunshine and not totally covered up in warm layers. We will probably be tired and a little sore over the next few days as we are not used to raking and things. It was good to get a hot shower when I got done. And, it sure made us hungry, so I made up a big dinner of chicken with tarragon mustard cream sauce, rice pilaf and green beans.


2paw said...

I just read a story from Japan where a dog stayed by her dog friend who was hurt and then brought the rescuers to find the sick dog. I had a big cry. It was such a lovely story and then I read that Saffy has been such a good girl and helped look after Silas when he was poorly. I think the world would be a much better place if we all behaved like these dogs. Saffy definitely deserved a big cuddle!!
They are ready for the paddle pool, how funny!! I am glad Silas is well.
It is the Autumn Equinox here about exactly now!! So it's really Autumn. Your garden is looking ready to go!!

knitseashore said...

Isn't it wonderful to be working outside again? We have cleanup to do too. I bought some carrot and lettuce seeds to try out in pots on our deck too.

I'm so glad Silas is OK, and Saffy looks out for him. What a great dog!