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Re: May so far

There was one almost hot day last week - new growth on my Hellebores
wilted and daffs leaned over - but it has been cool since.  Yesterday was
just plain nasty - rainy, windy, with temps around 45 degrees. Today is
sunny, but chilly and windy, and frost is predicted for tonight.
The late daffs are blooming now, and lots of other things are coming
out.  The native columbine is in full bloom.  It is really a weed, but I do
love it, so let it stay wherever it wants to be until I need the space for
something else.  Pulmonarias - three varieties, including a lovely white
one - are doing well. Speaking of weeds,  there are masses of white
violets everywhere in the lawn and around the edges of the woods and
boulders.  I don't ever remember seeing them so thick before. 
As for the vegetable garden, I have not done much.  Planted peas as
soon as I could get out, but not until late March. They are several inches
high, and every time I go down to the garden I fear they will have been
eaten.  I am using a "small pest repellant that Park's put out this year -
here's hoping it will protect them.  It's still too early to start squash 
beans, and since all my beans were eaten off as soon as they blossomed
last year I am waiting to see if the peas survive.  I put onions in, but 
plant them too well.  The weather has just not been conducive to spending
time in the garden, and when it was fairly nice, the shad flies make life
miserable. Add to that, these old bones just don't move as well as they
once did.I'm hoping to have a helper to come work one day soon and get
things in better order.  
This past two weeks have been mostly dominated  by plans for and 
execution of Horticulture Schools.  I did not go to Rochester for the one 
last week, but spent much time on the paperwork and preparations.  The one
here this week went very well, but  was totally time consuming, and I am 
in process of grading exams, etc.  I have a big box of that to do for last 
school, but I told them I couldn't get to it until I finished this one. And 
then there
is one in early June in the Buffalo area.  I have officially retired from 
this job 
after 22 years, but have promised my successor that I will still wind up 
three schools togive her time to get established.
In a message dated 5/5/2011 5:15:44 PM Eastern Daylight Time, 
cyndi.johnson@edwards.af.mil writes:

We are having a minor heat wave, it is 86F at the moment. Not terribly
hot and it will probably cool off a bit later in the week, but spring is
definitely here and summer is coming. 
Despite my best intentions I was later than I wanted planting the peas
so they are just starting to bloom. In misplaced optimism I reused one
of the "leaky" hoses for them, but I should have known better. After
only a year our hard water clogs the hoses up so much they need to be
replaced. I thought this one was okay when I tried it but I'm having to
hand-water them every day now which never does all that well. I might
try unhooking that hose and dropping a new one in the bed - I'll never
get the old one out without tearing up plants but I might manage to
maneuver a new one into place.   
The lettuce/spinach/cilantro bed has a new hose, so those are growing
like anything. Rabbits got under my little fence and chowed down on the
lettuce, so I'm having to wait for that to grow out again, but the
spinach is lovely and the cilantro is lush. I'm giving away bags of
spinach at work and I'll be chopping and freezing cilantro this weekend
for future salsa and cilantro pesto. 
I'm late on the tomatoes as well but we had frost only two weeks ago, so
maybe it was just as well. I'm putting them in the ground this week and
hopefully the peppers too. The frost took out half of the six zucchini
seedlings but those grow fast. I have not looked under the row cover
over the corn and beans, hopefully they are all okay; I can see a couple
seedlings peeking out the sides. 
My roses are going to be covered in maybe a week, lots of blooms right
now. Lots of weeding to do out there too, the gardeners are doing very
well but unless I pay them more they can only spend so much time. I'm
pretty happy with them, all in all. 
Every year around this time I promise myself to get out in the garden
after coming home from work and I'm actually doing it this year. So far
anyway. Even with all that needs to be done I can see the results, just
need to keep at it. 
DH put a trap in the chicken coop and has caught and disposed of three
ground squirrels (caught one cat, looked too well fed to be a stray
although maybe it was eating well on ground squirrel, anyway we let it
go). That is saving a lot of chicken feed, which doesn't cost chicken
feed let me tell you. And we sold our Suffolk ram plus one ewe, so we're
down to two sheep now, by the end of the year we'll be sheepless. I will
miss them, but it was a lot of work. 
How's your garden?  


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