Experience is a brutal teacher. But you learn, my God, do you learn.

-C.S. Lewis

Stream In January

Stream In January

Monday, April 13, 2009

"April is the cruellest month"

Poet T. S. Eliot wrote those words and they certainly apply to the weather in Western NC and probably a good part of the rest of the nation. By the way, the poem wasn't really about the weather.

We had strong storms Friday night, but thankfully were spared some of the most severe weather. There were several tornadoes reported to the south of us in the upstate of South Carolina. Saturday was clear, but fairly cool and breezy. I worked some in the garden and had the chance to photograph this little baby bird. It didn't show any fear. Not sure, but I think it's a pine siskin, or if not, probably a goldfinch. We have lots of both. Sunday dawned clear and sunny. By mid-morning it was mid-50's and by afternoon 62. The rain washed away a lot of the pollen in the air. We've had high pollen alerts for the past few days. The honeybees are loving it and the hive was exploding with activity. Noticing a lot of white pollen coming in now, along with the brilliant orange and yellows. Still not a lot blooming in the way of flowers other than daffodils and pansies, but there are several apple trees in bloom about a quarter of a mile up the road and I suspect they are working these tree. Tulip poplar should bloom soon.

I have been dividing and transplanting lots of perennials. Also putting in some new beds where we took down some trees in the fall. I hate to cut trees, but these were shading some of the garden and also the area where Walter Bee is located. It's important that the hive gets sun as early as possible in the morning and cutting these trees allowed that to happen. It's nicely shaded in the afternoon. I did lots of fertilizing. I use an organic product called Plant-tone on just about everything. I've also been adding bonemeal and/or super phosphate to day lillies and irises. Also anything I transplant, I use fish emulsion to water in the new roots. So far, no problem with a bear but I'm being very careful to mulch everything heavily to help cover the odor. I admit the stuff does stink, but does it ever make things green! (I hope I didn't just jinx myself with the comment about the bear. They are still my biggest fear for the bees..)

The cilantro seeds I planted have germinated. Even though the weather has been so rainy and cold, the lettuce I started from seed looks good, also. I planted potatoes a couple of weeks ago and can see tiny sprouts pushing through the mulch. Broccoli and brussel sprouts don't mind the cold and are growing nicely. Rhubarb is beautiful. All the herbs are growing except for the rosemary, which is dead. I've never been able to get it to overwinter. I'll replant mid-May.

Although it's almost 2:30, the temperature is barely 40 and it's raining. What more can I say? T. S. Eliot already said it.


vicree said...

Do tell what that little creature is in the lower right side of your 'sunny' April picture. Looks like a dog!

My neighbor and I spent a good part of yesterday working outside.
Of course we found it necessary to put on dark glasses - guess our eyes were overly sensitive to the bright light- I'm not sure but I think it was sunlight.

Lynn said...

I had to laugh because the dogs are not allowed in the garden. The little creature is actually a cat, although not a living one. It's metal. There is also a "dog" sitting on the other side.

Hope you and the neighbor are enjoying the sunshine. It's actually shining here today.

Barbara's Spot on the Blog said...

I think that bird is a Pine Siskind. I wish we had things in bloom here. We're having a warm week this week which everyone is very excited about after a really long winter. There are crocuses and daffodils in bloom right now. No tulips yet but the leaves are up.

I've never been able to get Rosemary to overwinter either. I've given up :)