Spring

Spring has arrived with an unlikely two sunny warm days in a row, over a weekend! We celebrated by playing in the muck. We raked most of last fall's leaves off the front and back lawns, and I cleared off and weeded some of the north border in the backyard. I pulled out about a ton of creeping charlie, which is surprisingly satisfying to uproot when the ground is soft; you can get hold of a bit without breaking the stem and then reel in about a foot of plant and roots, like a magician pulling scarves out of a hat.

We also uprooted some of the many raspberries, and I cleaned out some of the raspberry patch. There are dozens of plants there and it's hard to get the leaves and twigs and weeds out from between them, to say nothing of trimming out the dead canes, pulling out the millions of little suckers, and removing the raccoon poop. I think the smart thing to do with the raspberry patch will be to thin it out as well as reduce its overall footprint. The previous owners must have really like raspberries.

There are lots of little things growing, but the only things flowering yet are crocuses. I'm not sure what the other things are so I'm looking forward to their flowers. Some tulips I planted last fall are coming up in the front yard; Delphine is very excited about that because she helped me plant them.

Perhaps the most remarkable accomplishment this week was that Blake built a frame for our Square Foot Garden. That's a technique for vegetable gardening whereby you plant your entire garden in one (or more) four-by-four foot squares. We picked out the spot for the garden and Blake was poking around in the shed and found four perfect four-and-a-half foot planks, which he screwed together into a frame to delineate and protect the garden. I say this casually, as if Blake screws things together to make other things all the time, but if you know Blake you know that just isn't so. He is not what you might call "handy". However, he made a perfectly lovely frame without swearing or drawing blood, so I think he might be handier than either of us suspected. The frame is gracing our garden and waiting patiently for some nice compost and lots of seeds.

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