Where are we? Back in Raleigh? Saturday's near 7 hour drive was followed by Sunday's 6 hours at Longwood Gardens, followed by yesterday's near 7 hour drive home. But was it ever worth it. More on that in a future blog - I've got loads of pics to download from both of our phones. I want to do justice to the magnificent garden that we just visited, and to the three hour course on tomatoes that I was so fortunate to be able to deliver to over 30 fellow gardening enthusiasts.
Here's what I returned to: a garden that was well-tended by my daughter and her boyfriend, a set of tomatoes still adjusting to their new homes in straw bales....indeterminate tomatoes clearly loving their new 5 gallon grow bag homes....peppers and eggplant still trying to decide if they are happy or not in their new locations.
Today it is gently (and occasionally a bit more vigorously) raining, and the plants are loving it. I've heard pileated woodpeckers whooping it up in the woods behind our house. Cardinals and brown thrashers are singing their little hearts out. I've got a to-do list a mile long. Big plant donations, so SEEDS and at the Durham Main Library, will take place on Wednesday and Saturday (our annual morning Plantapalooza!), respectively.
The plant donations formally end our seedling season but open up space in the driveway for my garden to expand into roomier groupings and rows, and that is what will keep me busy in the coming days and weeks. Positioning the plants will be followed by staking, then tying, pruning, feeding - culminating eventually in harvesting, tasting, seed saving and preserving. It is all a continuum - the February seed starting was preceded by months of planning, which came after assessing the previous season. There is no time off from gardening - each month carries with it a critical step. Every one of those steps is enjoyable, informative, challenging, and something to eagerly anticipate.
It's mid May, it's raining, everything is getting ready to blast off into vigorous growth. This is a great time in the never ending gardening calendar.