‎"...a little 'trouty', but quite good" ~ Eve Kendall, North By Northwest

Sunday, April 20, 2008

journaling - possibly in the "actualizing the impossible" sense

Today I started a garden journal. I kept it simple - date, species, location - which of course does not begin to tell the story. Yes I know, for some gardeners it probably does tell the whole story. After all, you put seeds in dirt and water them. What's the big deal?

The trouble started when I was informed I should split my tomato seedlings. Tiny, precious, seedlings, no taller than my thumbnail, and I'm supposed to uproot and replant them? It was as if someone said, "due with twins? We should split them up and have the father deliver one."

I dutifully went to work last night, sliding a butter knife between the sprouts and lifting one out for relocation. I hadn't trusted the tomato seeds to actually sprout, so in some cases there were five or six seedlings jammed together. These require tweezers.

And then I watched. I watched as some of the seedlings drooped. I gave them more water, a little pep talk and some extra dirt. Some perked up, and then different ones started to droop. I think they're messing with me. Meanwhile, I planted more stuff - basil, jalapenos, and some other things I've forgotten. There's now an army of peat pots in my livingroom, encamped on a folding conference table in the south window. It looks very industrious indeed.

Also in the gardening journal I noted the locations of a new astilbe, some poppies and a lily called "Miss Lucy." They were all gifts and boy oh boy do I hope they come up. They were those little bundles of roots and dirt that you're supposed to bury and then try to remember where they are so you don't plant something else there. I just typed "astilbe" into my google toolbar to make sure I was spelling it right, and came up with "astilbe planting instructions." Needless to say, those instructions are not how I did it. Wish it luck.

I also planted 4 strawberry plants in a big pot. There are essentially eight strawberry leaves bespeckling a 24" diameter pot. Wishful thinking?

Now as I do all this, I keep thinking do cicadas like strawberries/tomatoes/sunflowers/Miss Lucy? Because we are scheduled for routine cicada maintenance this year, also known as A PLAGUE OF LOCUSTS if you're feeling biblical. Golly, has it already been 17 years since they last visited? How time flies. I don't know when they're hatching, but I'll be reporting from inside my bug netting. I will also wrap my entire garden, the chickens and my children in bug netting. You can't be too careful.

So at least I have my garden journal to go back to 17 years from now - in case I can't remember what cicadas were partial to. Hopefully it will not read "ate everything but the peat pots."


thefoodsnob said...

I could have sworn I commented yesterday!
I always think to do a garden journal every year.
In September.
I didn't know we were due for the locusts this year, better get ready (how, I have no idea.)


Mary Alice said...

You'll have to keep us posted on how splitting the tomato seedlings went. I've never tried it. They seem so feeble at that stage.

Susan said...

Lisa - you can borrow mine. I probably won't write another thing in it this year.

Mary Alice - They Are Alive! All of them! I even got pretty cavalier at the end, pulling up a clump, splitting off one at a time and poking them into new pots. I am unstoppable. I like your blog, btw. I lurked today.