John, Katie, and Alex were swinging in the backyard when the thunder first started to rumble. As she came into the house, it was obvious that the poor little girl was scared. Her eyes were big, she was clingy, and she was obviously listening to the approaching storm. She sat on John's and my laps for a long time, talking about the weather and how the clouds collide and go "boom," (a simplified toddler explanation, if not entirely accurate). Then, the storm seemed to reside.
I love springtime thunderstorms when they don't bring threats and warnings of more severe weather. The anticipation of the incoming weather grows as the trees begin to sway and the sky begins to darken is delightful. A storm seems to cool everything off and is an appropriate end to a hot spring day. Furthermore, the rain is much appreciated, as I've begun working in my little garden patches. I'll admit it, I tend to forget to water my plants after a little while.
I have fond memories of working in the garden with my mother and my granny. When I was a little older than Katie, they had a large vegetable garden that needed daily tending. I can recall, at the age of three or so, leaning on my rake, wiping my brow, and proclaiming, "Too much work for me!" Perhaps the reason I can remember so vividly is that the story was retold every spring and summer-- many times.
Last week, I began preparing my flower and veggie beds for the growing season. It really isn't a whole lot of work because we don't have many areas in our yard that receive full sun throughout the day. I have one flower patch by the front walk, a raised vegetable bed along the border of the front yard, a couple of tin tubs that feature strawberries and lettuce, and a couple of potted blueberry bushes on the side of the house. Each year, I have tried to increase our growing area, but our yield remains about the same. Might be the watering problem-- I really need to remember to do that!
Though we live on a small lot, I think it would be so awesome to grow the majority of our food, like the Dervaes family. The thing is, the majority of the sun hits our front yard and I rather like our grass. I wish fruit and vegetables would grow in the shade. Or, that you could bottle the sun and spritz it on the plants in a big daily dose. That would be semi-cool, if I remembered to do it.
But, I digress. Last week, Katie and I planted some seeds for an annual cut flower mix in my little flower bed. A year ago, I had planted some perennials in this bed, but they didn't return. So, it was bare, aside from weeds. We pulled up all the dandelions, examined some worms, and threw in handfuls of seeds.
Katie has diligently helped me to water the dirt each day. I really should get her a watering can that she can handle. We are patiently waiting for the little plants to peep through.
While waiting, Katie has been discovering other sorts of seeds, as well. She got a kick out of blowing dandelions in the yard, though I'm sure I'll somewhat regret allowing it later. But, what's childhood without twirling around with these little puffballs? Besides, I can always use the plants that pop up to make dandelion jelly.
Have you been busy in your garden this spring? What sorts of things have you planted? Do you have a goal of sustainability, or are your horticultural projects just for fun?
Check out other super gardening ideas with the Frugal Gardening 101 link-up.