Saturday, March 31, 2007

All in good time

The soils workshop starts at 9:00 a.m. tomorrow. It's an hour and 15 minutes away, so that means leaving at 7:45. Except I have to gas up the borrowed economy car (40 mpg vs. 10 in the truck), so make that 7:30. Except that at the last minute a car-pooler appeared, so make that 7:15 to pick her up. Plus chores, 1/2 hour, so 6:45. Plus breakfast and shower, so 6:15. And then it's raining tonight and I'll have to start the siphon on the tarped barn AGAIN... so the alarm gets set for 5:30. That's WAY early, for me. I'm a night owl. The myth about farmers getting up at the crack of dawn is just that, a myth, in my case. At least until summer heat sets in, and only the morning hours are bearable in terms of heat.

So tonight's entry will be short.

Spring is living up to its name here & now, things leaping out of the ground at unbelieveable speed. Everything is blooming at once...daffodils, tulips, flowering shrubs, trees.....

With last night's heavy rains, the ground is littered with flower petals as I drive the bus around town. White under the ornamental pear trees. Coral orange under the flowering quince hedge. Bright lavender under the redbud. Pink under the flowering crabapple. And then freshly-sprung, unmown lawns of the greenest green with patches of intensely yellow dandelions. It's as if the entire world were a rainbow!

Today, for the first time, I saw a number of honey bees working the redbud tree outside the livingroom window. This is reassuring; with the fruit trees blooming so early this year, and more and more ailments and parasites reducing honeybee populations, I was concerned about pollination.

My "Sweetheart" apricot bloomed a couple weeks ago, and has dropped all its petals. It usually bears heavily, but I've only tasted one apricot from it over the years. That one was picked up from the ground half-eaten...the squirrels always beat me to the fruit. Thisyear I'm thinking of resorting to drastic measures like electric fencing, to protect some of the fruit. The "Stella" self-pollinating sweet cherry is nearing the end of its bloom, and the "Montmorency" pie cherry is just barely beginning to flower. The expensive pear trees I planted in the yard have a few blossoms; they've been slow to bear. But the little seedling pear that just appeared from nowhere in the wilderness area is covered in blossoms! I'm excited to see what fruit it will bear. The two surviving apples (Liberty and Pristine, both resistant to Cedar-Apple Rust) will be blooming soon, too. The grapes, mulberries, and Carpathian walnut are all slower, just beginning to shown swelling buds. The Brown Turkey hardy figs are still snuggled under their heavy winter mulch of leaves, but soon it will be time to uncover them.

It's exciting to see these trees mature and bear fruit, after so many years of waiting. There is something especially sweet about a cherry from a tree I planted. Watching them helps me be more patient with my own growth, and the growth of the farm. Slow is not bad, slow is required for some of the very best things in life to reach their fullness. Slow is worth the wait.

No comments: