sprite writes
broodings from the burrow

March 29, 2012

state of the garden 2012
posted by soe 1:21 am

I reported a few weeks ago that Rudi and I made our first forays to the garden to assess how our plot was, to do some preliminary clean-up, and to plant some peas and some salad greens.


I stopped by late on Sunday afternoon to drop off the bags of dirt I bought. (No, it never occurred to me that people buy dirt either, but at my mother’s suggestion we did it a few years ago, and it really helped our little community garden plot’s productivity. We consider it money well spent.)

Thank goodness for wheelbarrows! Lugging four big bags of topsoil and soil conditioner by hand from the closest parking spot would have been an exercise in frustration, particularly as two of the bags had holes. (One had a hole when the guy got it down off a shelf for me, and the other got caught on the camping chair we keep in the trunk.) I can only imagine that I would have felt less positive about the expense of dirt if I had trailed half of it across the playing fields en route to the garden.

Nonetheless, bags of dirt safely ensconced in a corner of the plot, I still had some daylight left in which to admire what was growing already and to take some pictures to share with you all.

We have a healthy crop of violets. When we first got our plot, we dug up a whole bunch of violets that were in the middle of the plot, and planted them along the side. (You can kind of see them on the left side of the picture up above.) I remember Mia was horrified that we’d bothered to replant them, because she knew what we didn’t at the time: Violets are smart buggers. They have infiltrated our strawberry patch, and although I do my best to weed them out (they aren’t very attractive most of the year, after all), they know that I’m not going to dig up my strawberries to get at them.

But this means that in March, I have a very pretty wildflower garden.


I have two patches of chard that survived the winter/reseeded itself. This is the oldest patch, which I believe we planted three years ago.

Rainbow Chard

My herbs did well. The sage plant in the middle of the top photo came with the garden and always looks a little peaky this time of year. The rosemary that’s taking over the forefront of the shot was a gift from our neighbors after our potted plant was stolen a couple years ago. It went from being a well-behaved little guy to the behemoth you see now. We lost our lemon thyme (and, expectedly, our lemon grass), but the English thyme is holding its own.

These are our chives from last year:

Not Really Chives Anymore

Yes, chives. Those little, grass-like fronds. Except apparently, when they don’t die off, they become gigantic, aloe-like creatures. You can see at least two of them are going to have flowers, which are edible, sometime soon. I’m not sure if we’ll need to plant some new ones to have the more delicate scapes again, or if these will create more for us. It might be a matter of waiting and seeing.

Pea Shoots

The first crop of pea vines are up and roughly 1.5″ tall. I planted two more varieties, including a warm-weather-friendly one, last week. I may try planting peas again in September to see if I can pull off a late crop. No one brings them to the farmers’ market, which makes me suspect it’s not likely a winning crop, but I like to try things for myself sometimes.

Strawberry Flower

The first flower on my strawberry plants. If our crazy weather keeps up, it’s a possibility we’ll be able to eat our own strawberries on Rudi’s birthday in mid-May. (The markets usually have them by that point, but my crop is usually closer to Memorial Day.)

And, finally, I present to you my first harvest of 2012. On March 25. Just crazy.

First Harvest 2012

Category: garden. There is/are 1 Comment.

You’d better keep an eye on those violets. I’m almost certain they intend to take over your whole garden. They’ll look pretty while they’re at it, though. I think a couple of them were deliberately posing for that picture.

Our violets are just coming up now. It will be interesting to see how many we get of each variety this year. The tiny scented white ones expanded their territory significantly last year, but we got hardly any pale purple ones.

Comment by Karen 03.30.12 @ 9:04 am