We had some very warm days last week; it melted the snow that arrived in early December. The bare patches of ground, even in February, are a catalyst for dreams of green plants and home grown produce. In South Dakota, our growing season is on the short side. Our average last frost is in mid May, and the average first frost is mid September. It varies quite a bit each year; I remember putting carrots and spinach in the ground as early as late March, and also scraping my car windows on June 3!
Over the years we have tried to start tomatoes early, but have found that the sunlight we get through our windows is lacking, resulting in some tall and spindly seedlings. Last year, some late cold rains prevented us from getting them out until mid June, and they looked terrible all summer, with not much produce. Granted, it was a bad tomato year, but it was still disheartening!
We do try to grow herbs indoors, and have got a healthy sage and parsley pot, and have restarted some more basil. We have some rosemary and marjoram too, but they are still iffy. The big surprise has been the turmeric! DH Planted the root six weeks ago or more and it finally sprouted!
This year, I want to really work on the garden, and make it really productive, and maybe even beautiful. I think the physical work will be good for me, and the plants will be good therapy for my wounded heart. By fall, I’ll have a great sense of accomplishment, food to eat for the coming year, and a renewed spirit. Of course, DH will be working along side, and that will provide us a fresh and new task to do together.
On my list of what to plant:
Spinach, carrots, beets, green beans, tomatoes, peppers, white potatoes, buttercup squash, pumpkins and onions
Other possibilities might be: summer squash, cucumbers, kale, broccoli and maybe cauliflower
We already have some asparagus established, and our grape vines produced for the first time this last year. The cherry tree is producing, and hopefully we will get some apples this year. We lost the pollinator for our plum trees last year so will need to fix that this spring.
What are you growing this year? Most of you likely have started already! We don’t even have crocus shoots up yet, so we continue to dream!