Winter Garden Dreams
We all know the weather outside is frightful, right? I often wonder how to make it through the winter months without losing my mind. My green thumb starts itching, my seed catalogs get dog-eared pages, mountains of envelopes full of seeds from all corners of the country pile up everywhere, as I sit none too patiently staring at the silver-white landscape outside my windows.
There is a tattered sketch pad buried in the pile of seeds and catalogs where my dreams come to life in scribbles and lines and arrows and question marks. Sometimes ideas come in the wee hours of the morning when I am pulling blankets up over my head arguing with the sun who seems to rise too soon in winter and not soon enough the rest of the year. But I write down those thoughts in the half-light and decipher them later over green tea and Iowa honey.
Its inevitible that those sketches and plans will lose much of their meaning once the earth begins to thaw. I won't have the patience then to wait for nice neat rows, all well marked, and lettuce will be planted where peas were intended, pole beans dug in with no trellises in place (yes, we always get to that later), and the potatoes will end up planted in a barrel again instead of the new sheet-mulched beds. And we'll make it work, it will be beautiful, and we will LOVE it.
Last night I dreamed of freshly tilled earth. There is nothing like that smell. Although only part of our gardens actually get tilled, that smell is the indicator to me that it has all begun again. The glorious magic of seed in soil, watered and warmed in the sun until it sprouts, leaves reaching toward heaven in anticipation of the miracle of home grown food.
Until that time, I'll keep dreaming here... in the snow, in Iowa, in a chair with a cup of steaming tea, staring out that old drafty window, as I nibble on that taste of summer in peaches from Mason jars.