Monday, May 26, 2008


OK, well--one disappointment. The two big beds of arugula I planted are up, spotted with flea-beetle holes but otherwise handsome and healthy. Last week I picked a handful to nibble on was horrible. Bitter, peppery...way beyond any level of spiciness that I could've wanted. And now I have heaps of the stuff. I tried the younger leaves--still nasty. I suppose these are just the occasional disappointments of gardening--the long-awaited strawberries that succumb to rain, flowers that emerge an unexpected and hideous color. I will try to choke down a bitter salad or two, but it's still early--plenty of time to replant and start over with something else.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

green energy

Once things get going in the garden, there's no stopping them and finally, as we come to the end of a chilly, reluctant spring,things are going. The feathery, fragile seedlings of carrots and dill, the plump globes of the peony buds, the brawny, twining green shoots of peas and beans, the knee-high dandelions--everything is bursting with a kind of unstoppable energy. The peas are almost comical, with their wiry, alien tendrils reaching out grasping at something, anything to climb--a twig, a bamboo pole, the chive stalks.

The farmer's markets started up this week--the Copley market is now open Tuesdays and Fridays. Several of the stalls sell wonderful seedlings, including The Herb Lyceum's amazing range of herb plants and Atlas Farm's stocky, gorgeous tomatoes. I bought a six-pack of Sungolds and am trying desperately to make room for all of them. The Brookline farmer's market in Coolidge Corner doesn't open til June 19th this year, but for the late starters or those of us who can't resist over-planting, it always has wonderful plants for sale, especially flowers.

Thursday, May 1, 2008


A lot of progress in three weeks! Rhubarb is incredibly strong stuff. I transplanted my two plants from a row that my late grandfather planted in his New Hampshire garden more than forty years ago and they have been thriving in JP, producing enough stalks for endless pies and crisps. Now where are those strawberries?