Monday, January 16, 2012

Day 37: Imagining Spring

The first dusting of snow covers the yard, sugar-coats the fir trees, and forms an icy crust on top of the greenhouse. Winter often finds me pajama-clad mid-snowstorm, reaching recklessly beyond the commonsense zone of the step-ladder to sweep snow from 10-foot tall hoops with a shop broom. Despite my balance dysfunction, I have little to no luck recruiting help. The sense of urgency is mine alone. I worry about the weight of snow on the structure, but the forecast is in my favor tonight, and at least for now, the greenhouse and I are safe.
I like the snow, but like it best as frosting on my view of distant Olympic Mountains. Every now and again, I appreciate a good, school-closure downfall, heavy enough to drop a branch on a power line. The kids stay home, and we sled, build snowmen & snowwomen, cook soup on the woodstove, sip hot cocoa, and play Scrabble. Life slows down, if only for the day.
It’s hard to imagine spring with snowfall predicted over the next four days, but the seeds I started 12 days ago are germinating. The cabbage popped up first, followed by Brussels sprouts, then the romaine, and the chard. There is no sign of the red onions or the celery, but I figured as much. I’m predicting the celery will take another two weeks. It’s tough to grow, even in the heated office window space. The onions are anybody’s guess.
My hens have the beds worked up, and it won’t take much for me to transplant these seedlings once the brunt of winter passes. It’s probably wise to hold off until the middle of March, a week or so before the first day of spring. Spring seems like a long way off, but these fine spindles of green hold a promise of fairer days.

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