8 Ridge Road,
Martinsville, Maine


Food, Plants, Gallery and Landscape Design in St. George, Maine

Still winter

Posted on by Anne Cox

wading to witch hazelWinter continues to hold on. Rather tenaciously, given the -17 temperature this morning and the deep covering of snow everywhere. Some places we just have three feet, some places five, and then don’t even think about the huge mountains lining the parking areas and the drive through the nursery area. Nonetheless, before the last little (5 inches) snow I waded to the witch hazel and snipped a few branches to bring in the house for forcing. For the record, this time last year the witch hazel was blooming out in the woods, not just in the house.

witch hazelBut I will take blooms in the house. Slowly, slowly the coiled petals unfurl. And right now the room has a light, soft scent of spring. Yay.

I wonder how long we will have this deep snow pack with us. How long until it melts, and what sort of messy prolonged mud season will we have.

There is a mythic quality to this winter: Long, deep, time out of time, winds, sea smoke, beauty, difficulty, cold, confinement. We have spent this time planning, hooking, knitting, listening to some terrific audiobooks. Painting, drawing, planning some more. Oh, and shoveling. Lots of that. And jump starting dead batteries. And hauling in wood.

in greenhouseAnd yet, the sun continues it’s movement; days are getting longer. In response I am indeed starting seeds in the greenhouse. Microgreens and early seedlings: alliums, artichokes, celeriac, rudbeckia, asclepias, old friends and new experiments.

I’ve also been doing battle with rodents seeking refuge in the greenhouse. So far three down: one drowned in a water barrel (it’s own fault), one I trapped with a pot and returned to the wild (far, far away) and one killed with a traditional mousetrap baited with peanut butter. (But the photo was too gross to post.)

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