15 April 2014

Black Dirt All Around

It was a long horrible winter, but finally, FINALLY, it seems like spring. Sunday, one of the daffodils bloomed.

And yesterday, when I got home from work, there were enough open that I cut a handful for the dinner table.

I am very thrilled to be getting my gardening on FINALLY. We had to sit out all of last year, due to the construction project on our house. Not only could I not do anything, there were beds near the house that just got trashed, and there's a whole area where we took down some gigantic threatening trees - all of this needs work. Let me tell you, there is nothing as much fun as opening up cardboard boxes and unpacking all manner of little mail order plants.

Except maybe going to the wholesale nursery with a "connection" and heaving pots of this and that onto a flatbed tractor. Yeah, that was pretty fun.

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About a month ago, I was walking through the Greenmarket, on my way into the office, and I happened upon a vending machine. In the market, parked right there between a table of will-winter-never-end turnips and a booth selling Hot Bread. This vending machine was just visiting though - it's not a permanent installation, though wouldn't there be something cunning about dropping a quarter in and getting out a beet or an apple? I digress. This particular vending machine was sponsored by Seeds of Change, and it had a twist that I've not seen before: it was twitter-enabled, so if you tweeted a particular code, it made the vending machine whirl and spit out a brown paper bag of seeds.

I was thrilled to walk off with three packs of seeds: lettuce, broccoli, and peppers. I promptly planted them, inside in little improvised greenhouses, and they sprouted! Yeah! Green thumb! Alas, the stinking rotten cats have nibbled most of the leaves off of the broccoli seedlings, sparing the lettuce. Feh.

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In addition to my ambitious and possibly overactive seed starting, the girl's been doing an after-school gardening program. She brought home a clever little homemade self watering pot, upcycled from a small plastic water bottle. The top was cut off and flipped over and into the bottom, and a chunk of sponge descends from the neck down into the water, wicking the water up into the dirt that some lettuce is planted in.

We are rich in dirt these days, rich indeed.


Jocelyn said...

So funny--I clicked to read this post just as I was about to head downstairs to start my first seeds of the season!

Our public library has a new seed program; patrons can "check out" seeds (not sure if we have to return seeds once we harvest 'em). We got a few packets of beans and such from the library. Love it.

De said...

We're moving in June after school ends, so no garden, but I'll buy some patio tomatoes at least.