Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Old Man Winter's Last Gasp

This evening the peepers are chirping up a storm in the swamp. It is a sound that annoys some of our neighbors, but Michelle and I find the noise relaxing. They didn't show on Saturday though because it was frigidly cold, with temperatures well below freezing. While waiting for the weather to warm up I spent time potting up my way to early tomato seedlings.

The Brandywine seedlings that I started a week later are also getting to the point where I'll need to pot them up shortly. I'm finding all the work it takes to keep the larger plants happy is a high incentive to start them at an appropriate time next year.

The major project for the weekend though was working on the second large bed. Michelle had worked on it during the week for around an hour or so each morning and turned over a little over four feet. We went into excavating overdrive and finished a huge portion of the row, with just a couple feet on each end to finish off.

The first four feet have sod dropped back in them. For the rest we piled up all the sod on the first row before starting to excavate all the sand and rocks. With so many rocks in the soil it helps to have a lot of room to work with. This was especially true on Sunday when I went to work on the far end of the row and uncovered another monster rock. This time, however, it wasn't so big that I couldn't move it without leverage.

With the long dug out bed I was able to create a ramp to roll it out of its hole, and I had enough room to really use my whole body to move it. This of course led to me ending up hugging the rock very affectionately after I extracted it from its hole.

Michelle was actually in the car backing out of the garage when she saw me resting hugging the rock. She was laughing so hard as she jumped out of the car to grab the camera that I was sure she was going to fall. I didn't have the air to protest, so I just squinted into the sun and continued to hug my rock. At the very least I've learned that if I find a rock bigger than this one, I'll just have to leave it be.

I started all of my remaining tomato seedlings on Sunday night, which should give them about six weeks of grow time before I plunk them in the ground in mid-May. I'm re-using the Ultimate Growing System with tomato soilless starter, so I'm not sure exactly how they'll do with a replacement substrate but we'll find out soon enough.

1 comment:

The Dread Pirate said...

Hee hee!
That's an amusing pic of Chris and his pet rock.

Also, my mother is a landscape designer -- owns her own company, Going Native Gardens, which emphasizes using native-to-New-England plants instead of imports that don't contribute much to the local ecosystem. She has a nearly encyclopedic knowledge of local flora, and loves to talk with other garden enthusiasts. If you ever wanted to drop her a line about a weird planty question, I'm sure she'd be delighted to help. ^_^