Friday, April 24, 2009

Gardens available, carrots, gooseberries? blog?

Those of you in apartments or totally shady properties have several offers of available gardens in Montclair. If you do the work, the landlord will take sharing the harvest as payment. Also, HomeCorps is planning to reopen its community gardens this year.

Has anyone been successful raising gooseberries? Fred's mother (b. 1910) grew up in Montclair and loved picking and eating them as a child. She said they were common here then. So I bought some mail order a decade or two ago, but have found narry a berry. What am I doing wrong? Can I take a shoot from a bush that actually bears? I guess I will cut out the imposter bushes because they don't do what gooseberries are suppose to and they have nasty thorns -- worse than my roses, which do bear flowers.

Jackee De Alejandro responded to my sad email two weeks ago by offering to help me with a blog, and she has done a wonderful job setting it up. She has arranged it so you can search via topic -- although blogs are organized primarily by date. We're about to announce it to the world. Meanwhile, are there any prior emails that you think should be posted? If you can give the approximate date along with the topic, I can probably find it. If you return it to me, that's really convenient -- but not what I'm expecting.

Yesterday was carrot day at 56 Gordonhurst. I sowed my first carrots of 2009. The packet says "rich soil." Don't try carrots your first two years of gardening! I dug the patch with my spade, and then worked out the soil balls with a garden shovel, making the top of the soil like powder. Then I scattered the seeds as evenly as I could over the plot. Then I gently raked the whole plot until the seeds we just a tiny bit covered. The rain is now soaking the seeds, getting them ready to germinate. Soon I will put a floating cover over the plot to keep out the bug and bird competition. This must be taken off before hot weather hits in June, or the tops will burn. By then they can fend for themselves and don't need protection.

I have a "new" rabbit this week. He was VERY scared of me at first, but is responding to my friendly conversation with curiosity now. I had no rabbits last year, but if you didn't read about my rabbit friends of two years ago, you want to seek them out on my blog. Soon I should put the fence to cover the entrance to my inner garden in difference to my newcomer. Rabbits can't get over a one-foot fence, which I can easily step over.

More sadly, last evening we ate our last "potato kugel" of the winter. (in "Recipes for a Small Planet") We had lots this winter, using big carrots from the garden. Last year's carrots are almost gone, but within a few days we'll be harvesting and eating collards. So goes the year's cycle!


No comments: