So far, so good with the summer seedlings. Friday was the coldest night in the weekly forecast, and they weathered it perfectly. And this morning, after a slightly warmer Saturday night, they still look good.
I spent yesterday morning finishing up my sowing: salad greens among the tomatoes, a row of okra and sunflowers as a sidewalk hedge, cabbage and chard in a raised bed. Then I went grocery shopping, and then I did some weeding, and then I took clothes off the lines, and then I made coffee-chip ice cream, and then I ran out of steam and lay in the hammock and read Kidnapped.
Today: mowing and trimming, and more weeding, and then maybe some cooking, if I can squeeze into the kitchen. Paul's got some project going: a North African vegetable pie he wants to make. But I've been thinking of Indian food: homemade panir cheese, and dal, and naan. . . .
Spring is a very present-tense season for me: I feel as if it makes dull fodder for this blog, all of my planting and weather-fretting. Maybe people who garden in the South or in California can take life easier in the spring: they have so much more leeway, no frost-fears, no autumn door slamming the growing season shut. But northern gardening is very tense in spring. The earlier I can get things into the ground, the better chance I have of getting an actual harvest. The earlier I get things into the ground, the better chance I have of losing my crop and being forced to start over again, late. You see the conundrum.
Still, gardening in Portland is a dream compared to gardening in Harmony. If I'd had an open field there, I would have had an easier time. At least there would have been full sun, though the frost danger would have been higher. But what I had was essentially a gap in the forest, a thin acid lick of soil on ledge. I learned a lot about what was impossible. Also a lot about why New England farmers migrated West.