I’m in the thick of planning this summer’s garden and got a crash course in crop rotation and building asparagus beds thanks to avid gardener bloggers. I grew up with a vegetable garden in the backyard, but have never really paid much attention to the art of gardening. Weather permitting, I’ve always had great luck with my vegetable gardens over the years. A bumper crop of winter squash, as well as carrots, bush beans, tomatoes, and cukes that seemed to like what I had pulled together for them (Taylor Brothers Farm composted manure doesn’t hurt!). But at the end of last season, I was bitten by the “canning bug.” That makes planning this year’s garden a whole other thing.
A few varieties of tomatoes, slicing and pickling cukes, more carrots than last year (they stay nice and crisp when pickled). And then there’s the chest freezer to fill: shell peas, snow peas, green beans and Brussels sprouts for starters. I’m also going to try my hand at storing onions and garlic. Plus there’s the fresh salads and sauteed zucchini to enjoy during summer dinners on the patio. Hopefully the rhubarb will be happy after transplant – my son’s looking forward to strawberry-rhubarb pie. As for the asparagus, I’ll have to be patient for a couple of years as it establishes itself.
Now I wait longingly for our local growers to open their greenhouses. Edgewater Farm is one of my favorite places to go for seedlings, herb plants and annual flowers, and of course strawberries in June. Then later in the season, I skip up the road to Riverview Farm to pick raspberries, apples and pumpkins. How is it my mind has already wandered into fall? Soon enough. For now, I’ll keep up with the sugaring season and dream of green.