But we’re setting them out in Wall O’ Waters. (If you’d like more information on using Wall O’ Water plant protection, check out my article about them in the Fourteenth Year Anthology.) After all, even though we’ve seen temperatures in the mid eighties (two nights ago) it dropped to 28° F, making it necessary to fire up the propane heater in the hoop house where our newly transplanted peppers are happily living. Twenty eight degrees is pretty iffy in an unheated hoop house. Plants probably would be okay … but we can’t gamble on “probably.” And last night, it went down to 31° F. We checked at 3 PM and decided we didn’t have to run the heater and everything was fine this morning.
Yesterday, Ashley and I set out a big bunch of tomatoes in the Walls. I’ve found it best to set them out alphabetically for ease of finding different varieties, come summer and fall. Boy, that job took six hours on Saturday! Lots of varieties this year.
Our asparagus is going big guns this year. We’ve been eating it often. Ashley made a wonderful grilled asparagus, wrapping each fat stalk with bacon, pinned into place with toothpicks. Then she wrapped the whole thing in foil and put it on the grill. Oh my God, was it good! We gorged. I also canned up five pints and plan on doing that again tomorrow. In the past I’ve often been so busy planting I let the asparagus get ahead of me, growing into huge plants. This year I swore I’d get it canned instead as we just love it in the winter too.
Will is still hard at work in the new garden, removing rocks and pulled-out stumps. He picks rocks (some weigh 100 pounds or better), fills the tractor bucket, then when the garden is clean, he roots around with our big chisel plow which pops up more rocks. Luckily, there are fewer each time he does it. He sure is sleeping good at night. He figures he’s moved 22 TONS of rocks out of that garden so far. That’s a LOT of rocks! We’ll be hauling manure and fencing it pretty soon.
The planting is starting in earnest now. No more cold weather in sight, even on long-range forecasts. But I don’t trust forecasts totally. So I won’t be planting rare seeds or setting out unprotected plants yet. I’ve had unhappy surprises in the past and don’t want a repeat.
I saw my first oriole yesterday. I put out orange halves, grape jelly and oriole nectar two weeks ago but yesterday is the first time I’ve actually seen an oriole. Our hummingbirds were late coming north this year. We’ve had hummers for about a week now and we sure enjoy seeing them flitting about on our hanging baskets as well as the feeders in the yard. By summer, they get so tame we move the feeders up onto the front porch so we can watch them close up. — Jackie