Sunday, April 25, 2010

The Vagaries of Spring

It felt more like Summer than Spring here today; our temperature high was 70 degrees F!  Definitely not normal for late April.  

I was so tempted to pick up some annuals and plant them, but I managed to resist.  I remembered when, three years ago, I spent nearly $100.00 on annuals that I bought in a moment of madness in early April while visiting a nursery down the hill (6,000 feet lower in elevation and 30 degrees F warmer) with my sister.  Two weeks later they all died when the temperature dropped to 25 degrees F.  Sadder but wiser, now I wait.  

Before Global Warming really kicked in, I always waited until May 30th to plant anything.  The seasonal changes were more reliable than they are now and anyone who had lived here for a while knew that to plant before May 30th was just asking for disaster.  Now, I plant during mid-May and hope for the best.  And if I've guessed wrong and Nature plays her tricks, I watch enviously while the gardens of the gardeners who planted in April (and got lucky) bloom way ahead of mine.  Oh, well.

 I did pot up some pansies today that I bought down the hill last week and 'hardened off' by putting them outside for the warmest hours of the day, then bringing them inside for the night. 

Now the temperature has dropped to a chilly 39 degrees F and a cold little wind has picked up, so I've made a fire in the living room fireplace, and I'm going to have a mug of hot tea along with the peanut butter cookies I just baked.  The cats are asleep in front of the fire but the dogs are waiting not-so-patiently for the cookies they know I'll share with them. I just wish my Great Dane wouldn't drool...


  1. A lovely picture of life up there in the mountains, Victoria. Our rule-of-thumb in Britain is to start planting at easter, although last week we were dropping below freezing at night. I was even putting old coffee hars over the broad beans in the garden - supposedly the toughest veg crops of all. The ones in my draughty greenhouse, however, are at about 6-8" now. Sharing cookies with the dogs. My kind of thing.

  2. Your cozy fireside sounds like compensation for the later planting date!

    I succumbed to the madness the last time I was at the nursery and bought a cherry tomato already setting blooms. It's in my greenhouse though, awaiting our 'safe' date of May 15.

  3. JJ and Vicki, you're so lucky to have greenhouses! I've been imploring my husband to build one for years, to no avail. I think I'm just going to get a kit and build the thing myself!


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