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January 10, 2009 - Janet DelTurco
Just yesterday I sent in a column for next week lamenting that we still had no real ground-covering fall of snow this winter. Immediately it started to snow, and is still at it this morning. I will have to be careful what I wish for! It is so much better for the garden to have a nice even blanket of snow to insulate the soil and keep the temperature pretty even below ground, no matter how it fluctuates up here. When there is no snow to speak of, the freeze/thaw cycle shifts the soil and may heave up roots out of the ground where they can be damaged. Much better hidden below. I have a lot I could be doing today, but somehow I am hypnotized by the steady snowfall, and sit here playing on the computer and just looking out of the window. I was going to get all dressed up and go outside and shovel, but three different neighbors have done that for me this morning. Living on a corner lot means that there is a lot of shoveling to be done, but it also doubles the number of nice neighbors. Patrick, my youngest grandson shoveled for me twice yesterday while he was here after school, but today I am on my own as my oldest grandson has gone to work in my truck. I don't drive in this kind of weather, so it all works out. The garden is in my thoughts these days, making plans for the spring. I cleaned out the front flower bed pretty well this fall, removing a lot of nuisance plants like lily of the valley, chameleon plant and evening primrose, as well as old chrysanthemums that were no longer attractive. It amazes me to think that at one time I bought all those plants, and they all got out of hand. Now they are gone there will be space to fill this spring, and an opportunity to change things. Just like moving the furniture in my bedroom and living room, which I do several times a year. And the old forsythia came down and I will need a new shrub, unless I decide to let it grow back from the stump that remains. As usual I brought too many plants inside for the winter, but they are doing better this year. Even the rosemary looks healthy so far. The geraniums that are bare rooted dormant in the basement are putting out some leaves already, but it is too early to give them any attention yet, and I will ignore them for another six weeks or so. I could keep rambling on here, but this is too boring for anyone to read, so I will summon up my will power and get my desk cleared up, or empty the dishwasher or some other good work.
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