Monday, April 10, 2006

Chasing Weeds

The weeds have been having their way in my garden for far too long, romping all over the flower and vegetable beds, through cracks in the concrete, to the point I wouldn't have been surprised if they started banging on the windows, demanding to be let in. So between data analysis for my dissertation this weekend, and the numerous showers that dumped on us, I took the time to go out and chase down the weeds.

I got a large swath of the back yard done, mostly the asparagus bed, the xeriscape border at the bottom of the driveway, and the vegetable beds. At the left is a shot of the overwintered lettuce, now weeded and nicely mulched with used guinea pig bedding and shredded junk mail, giving a lovely tacky effect. A couple of hours later, the rains flattened the junk mail ribbons. If you squint carefully, you can see that the rosemary bush is in bloom. I took a sprig of it in to make pasta with sausage and rosemary and sun-dried tomatoes. Mmmm. Some of that lettuce went into the salad along with it.

We also had a handful of garden-fresh asparagus, which you can see popping up through more piggie litter, looking like so many space aliens. The peas are along the edge, right alongside the asphalt driveway that soaks up the morning sun, so they're getting the benefits of the heat. Looks like the little guys need thinned out, a chore I always hate to do, but it must be done. That's what I get for planting them so thickly. Sounds like such a good idea at the time, to plant thick in case germination is poor or the squirrels find the nice, soft, juicy seeds. But I feel like such a murderer. "Noo, nooo, I'm too young to dieeee!"

The new strawberries are coming in nicely, too. As the picture shows, they're putting on a good set of leaves. I hope they'll bear well this year. All that good cow stuff that I put in the bed first, then good guinea pig litter all over the top of them. They're well-nourished, that's for sure.

Next I must tackle the front yard. The tulips, daffodils, and hyacinths are blooming away, but they're awash in a sea of green, everything from California poppies to forget-me-nots, to thistles, dandelions, peppergrass, and a lush green composite with the unlikely name of nippleweed. The California poppies and forget-me-nots are thick enough to need some serious thinning, and the rest just need yanked out.

That'll have to wait until next weekend.

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