This spring is hard. But last spring during chemo was impossible. I’m always overwhelmed in the spring, although the self-talk helps me realize it is early and I can take it bed-by-bed until the garden is planted.
Right now it’s time to plant the alliums. I’ve planted out the leeks and some spring onions (small bulbs planted close together), and the shallots. Then, gathering together my seed potatoes, I discovered a small laundry basket with MORE GARLIC in it! I was so excited. The bulbs are starting to sprout but they’re still nice and firm. And I was just lamenting I’d only planted one bed of garlic. So I went out this afternoon and got 40 more cloves in the remaining space of the allium bed.
Last year I did not get onions planted. I was incapable of clearing the boxes and never got it together to put them in the bed alongside potatoes– which was just as well because I never had the energy to weed those potatoes. I got major help to get those in the ground.
This year I can’t imagine digging a trench in that garden, but I know I will. I’m able to dig out the deep-rooted weeds in the raised beds, turn the soil over, even shovel some of the new compost Steve dumped in two beds and move it to the other beds that need it. I can chunk open the bags of mushroom compost and spread it on the beds.
Last year I had time– so much time. But I couldn’t do a thing. It was impossible.
This year I have time– I’m working a bit, volunteering a bit, but I have afternoons that stretch out for hours. And though it is hard, I can also be more methodical. Today I relocated the adolescent chickens, who were very crowded in the pen, out to the summer home. I’m a little worried they don’t have enough adult feathers, so I bought a heat lamp, assembled it, and ran cords from the house out to the coop. It was not a big deal, but I usually don’t do things like that. I also cleaned out the straw and put new straw down, cleaned the extremely dirty water dispenser and food dish.
It is hard because in every area I see the neglect from last year. I was too tired to take proper care of the chicken water dish. I was just not up to cleaning things out and getting rid of the rusted feeder in the fall. None of the fall clean-up of the garden happened.
So there are more weeds, and more chicken poop, and there was less garlic.
But we have a new garden fence (almost) completed and six new chickens in the yard. We are eating salad quite regularly, and there are carrots coming up in the greenhouse. Last year there were no carrots. It was impossible.
Tomorrow, I’ll plant bags of interesting potato varieties I bought from a guy in New Hampshire. They can sit in the greenhouse until it’s really warm. Finish turning over a bed and put beets in.
And we’ll take it from there. Hard but thankfully not impossible.