So after a wasteful spell of sulking, I reviewed my “to-do” list with fresh eyes. There must be SOMETHING I could do until the weather co-operated. There is still snow in the most shady spots although it began raining on Monday night through Tuesday. Needless to say, it is more than saturated out there. This falling further behind in my well-made, but obviously overly optimistic planting schedule was causing my emotions to free-fall in a downward spiral, and that just won’t do! My grandmother always said “Hope and plan for the best, but deal with the worst. Do what you can do, and don’t fret about the rest.”
So with the first pause in the rain, I picked up another 4,200 black walnuts from the front lawn. There’s still at least 4-5,000 to go, but that’s all my “winter-do-little” muscles could tolerate. It felt great to actually get outdoors between showers and move purposefully. Add that number to the 11,100 that I picked up last fall, and no one should wonder that we’re having a ghastly winter. Then I decided to gamble, and moved 10 flats of the hardiest plants to the greenhouse. (Pansies, violas, dwarf favas, sweet peas) These overcast days are perfect for moving plants so they can adjust to brighter light without being sunburned. I think I can keep it above freezing as the forecasters have revised daytime temps upward to 40’s and 50’s and the lowest night temperature up four degrees to 26F. That created enough space for more seeding flats, so I’m back on schedule with 75 varieties planted so far. That greatly improved my mood. And then I realized that I could plant potatoes, since they were destined for pots between certain rows of the potager beds this year. They could be moved into the greenhouse on the coldest nights and get off to an earlier start. So, I rummaged in my pot mountain in the pole barn, selected pots the size I wanted and put 3″ of bagged composted cow manure in the bottom followed by 2″ of compost. I chose 2 of the most-sprouted French Fingerlings for each pot, cutting them if need be so there were only 2 good sprouts per chunk. I know some folks say you must let them air dry after cutting to “scar over and seal” the cut, but my grandmother never did, so I don’t usually either and there’s never been a problem. A covering of another 2″ of compost will do for now and more will be added as the sprouts grow. I just did 3 pots, and will do more as I have time and compost available.
I finished filling all available space under lights in the basement by transplanting more seedlings. That total is only 1486, so I’m lagging behind the 2203 last year. Unfortunately, the forecast is for mid-to-low 20’s at night for the next ten days and more SNOW on 2 of those days, so I’m not willing to risk moving more plants in the greenhouse yet. At least there’s been a bit of progress, even if it’s only a tiny bit.