Saturday, March 22, 2008

Spring Sanity Garden

I've been deputized, by Sandy, to host Easter dinner. Clearly I am slipping. For years, I've suckered her into doing all that hard work.

This, of course, has inspired a cleaning frenzy, indoors and out.

I began by searching for the walkway to my front door. During our winter of record-breaking snow, I threw in the proverbial towel and quit shoveling. (My way of encouraging friends to invest in snowshoes if they want to come visit.)

This acreage has what we call severe micro-climates. The Backyard Garden is still resting under 4 feet of snow. The Sanity Garden is completely melted, with tiny daffodil shoots and hardy geraniums peeking out of the mud. (Both gardens in full sun.)

And, this, my friends, is why I named it 'sanity.' Gardening defies logic high in the mountains. I keep my wits about me by making mud pies in this hot spot, while impatiently waiting for spring to grace the rest of the yard.

Happy Spring. Happy Easter.

Easter Side Dish: Sweet Baby Veggies
  • 1/2 lb. miniature carrots
  • 1/4 lb. miniature zucchini
  • 1/4 lb. patty pan squash
  • 3 tbs. butter
  • 2 tbs. dark brown sugar
  • Sprinkle with lemon pepper and chopped fresh chives
Steam veggies to crisp-tender. Melt butter and brown sugar in a stir-fry pan. Toss baby vegetables for about 5 minutes, until warm and nicely glazed.

Micro Climate Gardening: I can cheat zones in areas of my yard with heavy snow. Drifts serve as a blanket, keeping zone 6 and tough zone 7 perennials alive. The Sanity Garden is zone 4 since the bare ground suffers from hard freezes without snowdrift protection and moisture.

The rock behind this blanket flower seedling is the culprit. Intense mountain sunlight heats it up, even in the midst of a cold winter. The heat it generates melts surrounding snow.

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