In this short March post, I talk about dreams for the spring garden! This past week we’ve done some cooking at home. I made a pea soup that was delicious! And I thought, gee, what would make this perfect is some of my home-made chow chow that we canned two summers ago. I thought I’d used it all but checked the hutch in our basement, and there was one lovely jar left. I was in heaven. We also made our first batch of hummus, and it was wonderful. I eat hummus every day. I might one day turn into a gigantic chic pea. Anyway, I think we’ll do more canning this year as well.
Here’s the plans for our back yard gardens and wildlife this year. First, we aren’t going to plant more trees. We’ve planted 51 trees in the last two years (some bushes), and that’s enough for now. Some of the trees, like the oaks, maples, butternuts, and others, will take a long time to grow tall. Each year they do inch up with more leaves. Last year, we did the fruit trees and will get strawberries this year. We’ll also have blueberries ready. For the strawberry patch, we had to cover it in hay this winter and then we’ll build a low fence around it with a strong chicken wire roof that will allow in the sun but keep out the deer. Last summer we clearly saw deer hoofprints running through the patch.
The one other thing I want to plant this year is jasmine. I’ll train it up one of the many archways near the rose gardens. Maybe I’ll do more than one arch. I’ll try to protect the plant during winters with low density polyethylene material or something, but I need to research that first. I love jasmine. It is missing in my life! Before the holidays I made soaps and candles for friends. One of the scents I used was jasmine, and just breathing it in made me feel happy.
So you can call me Jasmine Chic Pea.
In the gardens I am planting green beans and tomatoes, along with many herbs. And probably chic peas (might as well, right?). I’ll also do beets and turnips and possibly some cucumbers. I haven’t decided everything yet, as we won’t plant until late May or early June. I will be growing mint this year, mainly for Kentucky Mules and Mint Juleps, but also it helps repel mosquitoes and even mice. In the fall, we had the occasional mouse in the house but haven’t seen any more for months. They like to seek shelter when it first gets cold.
We’ll also get a bat box. We thought about making one, but for this first year I decided to buy a cedar one. It’s so wet around here in the winter; cedar is good, but it’s also expensive. I just want to see how the box works before we build one ourselves. We also have to get something to hang it on. It’s not good to put them on trees. We’ll probably erect some sort of wood pole with some concrete at the base near the back part of our property. Bats also keep away mosquitoes!
I’m excited. We’ve had a very long winter, with a lot of storms, some floods even. I’m not exactly looking forward to the black flies, but can’t wait for warmer weather. It’s getting to 7 C today, and that’s fantastic news for us.