Friday, December 21, 2012

Formula for the shortest day of the year

There was a huge double-rainbow in the western sky just as the sun came up today.  How lucky can that be? And the rain didn't fall all night long as predicted, leaving open a short window for ... you guessed it ... more winter weeding.  The winter garden here is a small patch -- eight 75 foot rows -- and the deadly grip those nasty weeds have on it is increasingly perilous.
Seems to me Congress needs to do a little weeding, too. There are some nasty weeds in that group that are smothering the good works of many. These weeds, it is apparent, are far more interested in seeing President Obama fail than they are in seeing America succeed. These are dangerous weeds that have fallen under the spell of the once feisty but now corporate bought and paid for Tea Party. Today, the shortest day of the year, is a great day for Speaker Boehner to make a dramatic move: cut a deal with the Democrats in the House and bring along enough of his fractured party to pass it and send it to the Senate. Then, like winter gardens everywhere, the die will be cast for a bountiful spring. And I'm guessing he and his Grand Ole Party will find a little gold at the end of that rainbow, too.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Global warming experiment ends

It was back in early August, when the days were hot and long and the sun unforgiving, that it occurred to me to throw one final row of tomato plants into the ground. Normally my last succession of tomatoes would have gone in during the first week in July. Treading where I'd never gone before, I plunged the young plants into the reddish soil near the roadside on a hot afternoon. Would this simple act tell me if climate really is changing? Getting warmer? Will the plants have a story to tell?  Could a final row offer a bit of redemption after a dismal tomato-growing season?
It was anything but a scientific experiment. No notes kept nor temperatures recorded. And last night's frost -- the second in as many nights -- put my little experiment out of its misery, but not until after it had produced a few weeks of wonderful heirlooms and then a few weeks of cooking quality 'maters. Was it a  success? Who knows? I'd say it was more a taste of sweet redemption. A much needed elixir on the road to the next growing season.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

The barn is RED!

One thin coat applied. Another coming today, sprayed on just days short of the winter solstice by my singing buddy Steve Rose, an amazing painter and guitar player. The red -- with green trim -- can symbolize this season of caroling and good cheer as well as my passion for growing tomatoes and peppers and other things green and red. Red is ripeness. Red is desire. The burning desire to bring forth from the land amazing things, to surprise myself with its fertility.
There, I have done it! I have blogged again after two years of lying fallow in the blogging forest. Or was I merely postponing going out on this frosty morn and doing more weeding in the lettuce patch?