Wicked Wind from the South

Whoo Weeeee…the wind has been howling for three days now and despite it coming from the south it is anything but warm. Two days ago the leaves on the poplar trees started to unfurl but it appears they have since started to curl up again against the cold. I persisted in planting the garden anyway – even the carrot seeds! How anything so microscopic can contain an entire carrot is just one of the many mysteries that makes gardening so interesting.  Just why a gardener would huddle over the carrot bed to shield the seeds from blowing away in the wind instead of waiting for a calmer day is also a mystery. Crazy impatience! Afterwards I spread sheets of burlap over the carrot beds and watered them down. I discovered that trick a few years back and it works like a charm to keep the little carrot seeds from drying out for the long two to three weeks it takes for them to germinate. The burlap still lets water and light through – though carrots don’t need light to germinate so a board would work equally well. Both help keep seeds from blowing away. Frequent watering is still a must. Especially during a hurricane…

The only seeds I lost in the wind were a packet of sweet peas. I had opened the package up and then set it down inside a box filled with seed packets for just a second while I picked up the hoe, when a big gust of wind tipped over the seed box and sent the sweet pea packet cartwheeling across the garden. By the time I caught up with it all the seeds were gone. Maybe in a few weeks I’ll find a trail of sweet pea sprouts to mark the path it took…but I doubt it. Strangely enough all the other seed packets (all unopened of course) stayed in the box.

Our trio of Icelandic sheep – from left to right Ulio, Zuess and Whippersnipper – were sheared two days ago. It’s always hard timing it so the fleece comes off at the optimum time. They look pretty happy to have shed all that weight, but I’m thinking perhaps they’re missing their woolly coats on this wind whipped day! Zuess has beautiful fleece which I am tucking away for that winter day when I finally learn how to spin. The other two fleeces are for my containers. I use them to line the sides and bottom. The wool wicks up any excess water and then leaches it back into the soil as it dries out. It might be a good burlap replacement over the carrot beds too – it would certainly insulate and absorb water better. Maybe I’ll use some on one of the beds just to compare…gardeners are kind of like scientists hey? Always experimenting and completely in awe of the world around them!