Farm Tales

Finally, Almost

Posted by MaryAnn the FarmWife on April 29, 2013 at 4:10 PM

This spring has been really slow at getting started. From January to now, the daily temperatures are about ten degress below normal. Not crazy cold, but too cold. That may not seem like much to most people but to me it's everything. The calendar for growing things is way off. It is slow. The soil is just a bit too cold for the vegetables to get going. I should have lettuce by now but it's hibernating and so is just about everything. 

The pasture grass is green but not growing like it should. My apple trees are just holding those flower buds tightly closed for a couple of weeks now. The asparagus has only sent up a few shoots. The soil is too cold this year for April to happen. Vegetables didn't sprout. Then two days ago....they showed up.

The barn swallows had been missing. They usually arrive around April Fools and set up their nests on my porches. The weather was too cold for them to come home in April. No bugs to eat. 

It was a subtle thing to notice. It wasn't as obvious as the spinach that has been holding with just 6 leaves for four weeks. The broccoli raab (which likes the chill in the air) never grew either. No lettuce, no barn swallows... until this week

Those barn swallows make me crazy all spring and into the summer. For a few years we had continuously knocked the nests down and waged war with them. It is like have squatters move in. They make a mess on my porches. EVERYWHERE. Finally we caved. They won. The condos are here to stay.

We have become good neighbors as it were. When John mows they follow him on the tractor swirling and swooping and eating the bugs as he goes...If I am out in the gardens they sweep by my face with inches to spare, grabbing mosqitos from the air.

 :) It will be May in another two days, so I guess I will just give up on having April. The swallows will lay their eggs and they will have nests of peeping babies to feed but they will be born the end of May. Just when the lettuce is ready...

Categories: Gardening, Muddy Stuff