Beating the Blues and Blight


| 2/13/2017 1:52:00 PM


Tags: tomato blight, tomato disease, garden preparation, Susan Slape-Hoysagk, Oregon,

It is raining. Again. For us at the northern Oregon coast our days this winter season have been either crystal-clear-blue-gem-sky days with temperatures down into the 20s and 30s, or a firmament of variations on the gray theme that dumps a deluge. Some days it really has been raining sideways. Yes, we normally get a good amount of rain here; something like an average of 68 inches a year (the landscape is green for a reason!). However, the rain doesn’t usually stop me from puttering around outside. But torrential rains? No thanks. Frozen ground? Pass. Besides, if you muck around your garden when the soil is water logged you will mess up its structure.

Admittedly, I am having a pity-party. This last year has happened to be one of the roughest in my life. Adding insult to injury, the garden is my therapist and the therapist has been out! Mother Earth has been either too soggy or too frozen. The grass crunches under foot or feels like a giant, wet, spongy slip-n-slide and it is only a matter of time before I end up horizontal. Not really very therapeutic and I find as I age I worry about breaking hips and things. Doting over my houseplants isn’t cutting it. Beautiful seed catalogs entice me only temporarily.

Thinking organizing my computer files might be a good idea (I didn’t day fun), I ran across pictures of my gardens from last year. This reminiscing triggered daydreaming. Then daydreaming’s fuzzy path led me to thoughts of spring, renewal, new beginnings - and as corny as it sounds, hopefulness started to slowly bubble up from within me. As there was a break in the weather, I decided to go for a walk in the yard.

daffs

Daffodils pushing through the frozen ground.

To my amazement there are signs of life! The daffodils have bravely pushed tips of foliage through the intermittently frozen and sloshy earth. My star magnolia (Magnolia stellata) is showing off her silvery buds. I do love the intricate, creamy white flowers those buds are hiding inside and sweet-yet-delicate perfume that comes with their early spring debut. Then I spy the lemony-yellow flowered Camelia japonica that is budding up right on time. It will open a stunning complex yellow flower that eventually fades to a soft buttercream. The more I walk the more I see the beginnings of spring. Tiny reddish buds of Viburnum davidii nestled amongst dark, leathery leaves. Little blips of bumps letting me know my blueberry bushes are waking up despite the crazy weather and my dampened mood.




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MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR

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