Spring planting

A little belated this year, partly because of the move and partly because the weather has been unpredictable, but I finally got my garden in the ground yesterday.

Our new backyard has an old fire pit that’s about four or five feet wide, fashioned from cinderblocks and filled with charcoal and ash. I hadn’t originally planned to do a lot with it, but while I was unpacking a box a couple of weeks ago, I found some arugula and California poppy seeds I’d bought last summer at a nursery in San Francisco, so I planted them back there just for giggles.

Then a big Cherokee Purple tomato plant caught my eye at Lowe’s the other night, so I bought it and a tomato cage and stuck it in the center of the fire pit. While I was planting it, I noticed that the openings in the cinderblocks had a lot of weeds growing in them. If weeds will grow, garden plants will grow, so I went back to the store and bought a couple of bags of potting soil and a bunch of seeds. There were enough cinderblocks to accommodate asparagus beans, basil, chives, cilantro, dill, parsley, two varieties of cucumber, watermelon, tabasco pepper, sage, and strawberries. We’ll see how they do.

I’m thinking of renting a tiller and turning the entire front yard — which isn’t very big — into a cottage garden full of wildflowers and pretty herbs. I’d also like to plant hostas in the little narrow, shady areas on either side of the house.

Once we fence the yard, I’ll add a water feature to attract amphibians. (I realize I’m a mile away from the most awesome water feature in North America, but if there are Fowler’s toads breeding in the Mississippi, they aren’t singing loudly enough to be heard over here in my neighborhood.) I also need to rustle up some wisteria somewhere. It’s too late in the season to set up a beehive — which I won’t do until the yard is fenced anyway — but I’m going to start at least two next spring, and I’ve just about decided that a wisteria arbor would be a perfect way to provide shade and a visual screen for a modest apiary.

Speaking of pollinators, I was pleased to discover bumblebees living somewhere near the east side of the house. I’m not sure precisely where their nest is, but I’ve seen several of them flying around rather purposefully in that area, so I’m sure they live close by. They’re ridiculously cute.

daydreaming about bees and hoping my girls are happy with their new keeper in Owasso