Monday, May 7, 2007

How does your garden grow?

Good lord, spring has sprung.

In the intervening weeks there have been fishing trips with time in a canoe, new sleeping bags and kids camping on the porch, fantastic food and basic fare, school emergencies, baseball (re)schedules, talking and holding and loving and listening and planning.

The Big Project these days is (of course) the garden. David and I went to the nursery near the farm (only 20 minutes down the road, doncha know) and I was completely delighted. David bought me a beautiful yellow climbing rose that I became irrationally fond of. There was also a new variety called Hot cocoa that caught our attention, but wasn’t open yet and we decided to wait. We were concerned that it was more novel than actually lovely. It’s all about the scent and the color, so more research was needed. After reading about it a bit, I think it would be a perfect little addition, but am not certain where it will live as yet.

We also got some herbs that I put in large pots in the front beds: basil, lavender, thyme, lobelia, sage. While we were looking at them, we talked about replacing the current gravel walkway with a stepping-stone-and-ground-cover one. I showed him dragon’s blood and creeping thyme and some variety of moss that I can’t recall at the moment. I confess: I love creating space with plants. When we got home, we pulled up the wooden rail on the house side of the walkway and David tilled the bejeezus out of the grass and clover that had grown up. It looked better already. What is it with me and the smell of sunshine and torn up grass?

For the garden, David and I chose some tomatoes (more than we will likely ever eat in one year’s harvest) and peppers. I raked the old straw out of the beds while David drove the tractor to get the compost, and we have two beds of tomatoes, turned, raked, amended and planted. The soil is the most loamy, wonderful soil ever, and the tomatoes ought to be singing a little o-am-i-happy song in this morning’s sunshine.

The belle of the ball, though, is the scarlet maple that David and I both liked. She isn’t very tall yet, but she is precious to us. I meant to take a picture of her in the morning light, but got distracted, as morning-time can sometimes be.

The children were filthy and happy when we sent them in for baths, and we weren’t much cleaner ourselves. We cleaned up, did tuck-ins, put the tractor and the horses to bed and then ate a late dinner, complete with asparagus from the garden and a chess game. A note on the chess: a few weeks ago, David gave me a very small-yet-powerful piece of advice: Be more aggressive. Now, this is not the first time I’ve ever heard this advice, either directed at me or at the general chess playing audience. Somehow, it seems to have clicked when he said it. My chess game has taken a salient turn, and I’m having more fun than ever. Who knows how long the streak will continue, but I’m having a ball watching the new patterns erupt.

I love our home. We still haven’t figured out the specific realities of staying where we are, but what we are building together transcends location. No matter what, I truly believe that our Home is and will continue to be one of the most loving and wonderful places. Ever.