It is late March and despite the subfreezing temperatures and the promise of snow later in the week, we just met with our gardener to discuss the vegetable garden we want to plant this spring. The snow has finally melted, for now at least, and it appears as if some “early birds” are already nest hunting around the house, confirming that spring will arrive…eventually and our Garden of Dreams will become a reality. The excitement is palpable. Well OK, maybe it is not as exhilarating as winning the Mega Millions, which I tried unsuccessfully to do this weekend or even as stirring as the status of March Madness, but for Irwin and I and our slow home lifestyle, it is absolutely thrilling.
Irwin & our gardener measuring for the garden
An "Early Bird" Nest Hunting
We have been discussing the possibility of planting a vegetable garden for eleven years, ever since taking title of our home in the country. The thought of growing food along with caring for farm animals has been a dream of ours from the outset. It is almost impossible NOT to consider a slow home, farming life when surrounded by lush farmland, rolling hills and babbling creeks, but the reality of our weekender status never allowed us to move forward with either.
lush Farmland, rolling hills
However, that never stopped us from dreaming about as well as continuing to discuss it. Early on, immediately following our first visit to the local county fair, I was convinced that raising animals was our destiny. After looking at all of the beautiful farm animals brought to show at the fair, I knew that would be a part of our future in the country. And while my dream of an Alpaca farm is still on the back burner, our dream of building a garden and growing our own vegetables is coming to fruition. Now that is progress, country style.
A Fair to Remember:
A couple of kids
This big piggy
Seriously, she's got Milk
After sharing the fresh salad our neighbor Gloria, a master gardener, brought to our Road Party last summer, we revisited the possibility of planting a garden this year. Gloria had offered to mentor us, which was just the impetus we needed to get the ball rolling. While we had what we were hoping was the ideal location, there was still the issue of maintaining the garden during the week, when we are in the city. That glitch was remedied when our wonderful neighbor Jeanne suggested that we collaborate on the vegetable garden.
Gloria's fresh garden salad- helped make our dream a reality
The plan was simple. We would house the garden on our property (Jeanne does not have an appropriate spot) and she would help maintain and water it as best she could, when we could not be here. After initial costs were calculated, we would determine appropriate shares of cost and harvest and go forward from there. All we needed to do was wait for spring.
And what a wait it has been. Despite several glorious spring days, we in the Northeast, are still experiencing winter weather daily but are hoping that eventually, (and by that I mean before July) spring will indeed arrive.
So here are the basics of our plan:
A ten by ten or smaller sized garden with raised beds. We don't want to bite off more than we can chew, at least initially. A fence eight to ten feet high surrounding the garden to keep out the deer that use that area as a thoroughfare as they head up and down the mountain and chicken wire under the beds to deter woodchucks.
That is it: Simple and sweet, at least for now. Much like our life in the country.
We'll see how this plan pans out. I am sure like most other things, it will be a process with many lessons learned along the way. But have no fear, I will be sharing updates as they occur and spring’s renewal as it transpires.
Just wanted to leave you with these beautiful faces of Charlie’s friends in the country. They stopped by to say hello while we were out making plans for our vegetable garden.
And share this beautiful pair of bouquets, which are always in full bloom. All the proceeds from the sale of these spectacular chairs will go directly to Komen CT.
the entire proceeds from the sale of these beautiful chairs will go directly to Komen CT