Spring is absolutely my favorite time of year. Everything is coming back to life and the whole world is just so full of potential. This is the time when I start embarking on my many annual projects and set up my plans for the next few seasons. Of course, this means that it becomes the busiest season, but it feels good.
During the winter, I feel cooped up and frustrated most of the time. I’m not the type of person who enjoys the cold. Several years ago, I actually moved from Massachusetts to New Orleans purely to avoid the harsh New England winters, but ended up moving back in with my parents when I became sick. Once home, I started dating my now-husband, who had been a close friend for many years, and I ended up putting roots down. I’ve always dreamed about returning to the south annually for the colder months, but that’s a dream that likely won’t be fulfilled until retirement.
So far this year, I’ve already made a lot of progress. Some of my long-time regular readers will be familiar with the saga of the planter box in my back yard. The first year we moved in, I tried to tackle its overgrowth with my bare hands. Last year, I had the appropriate tools, but was so heavily pregnant that I could only do a tiny bit at a time. This year will be the year. It’s already half done, and my seedlings still aren’t quite ready to go in the ground. They should be ready around when I finish clearing the planter box if I’m able to keep up the rate I’ve been working at.
I have plans for a farmstand as well. I have some pallets from our pellet delivery over the winter that I’m going to break down and turn into a table. I’m going to start off by selling chocolate mint plants, because the ones a previous owner of the house planted in the yard are completely taking over. I’ve already given a couple plants away to family members, and I trimmed some of the plants to start them drying in my kitchen. Once I have some more dried, part of what I get will go in my stash because it makes a delicious loose-leaf tea. The rest will go out for sale. The same is true for some of the produce I’m planting this year. I already know I’m going to have a surplus.
The longer I’ve lived in the house, the more baking I’ve done as well, and I find that I love to bake even more than I love to eat, so sometimes I end up making far more than I can eat. If I sell baked goods at the farmstand, it will allow me to indulge my passion as much as I’d like. I do often give my baked goods away to friends and family as well, but I only see them about once a week, so depending when I make different items, they may have gone stale by the time they’re picked up or delivered.
So far this spring, I’ve managed to complete a few projects that I’ve had on my to-do list for quite some time. I set up the composter, and got morning glories planted around the trellis by the front porch. I also started my seeds on time this year. The past couple of years I started them later than I meant to, and because the planter box wasn’t cleared soon enough, I never ended up getting them into the ground. I have a few things going. I started tomatoes, spinach, and strawberries. The strawberries are growing in one of the hanging planters I make out of old plastic bottles. I also have sunflowers started. They’re a breed that’s specifically formulated to attract (and nourish) pollinators like bees and butterflies. I’m really excited about those. I still need to trim back some of the raspberry bushes, but first I’ll have to figure out where I put my pruning shears at the end of last year.
This year has been so productive compared the the previous two. The first year, we just finished moving in during April, so I had already missed the beginning of the season and was unfamiliar with the land. Last year, I was so heavily pregnant that it was difficult to get anything done between the fatigue and my giant belly. This year I do have to watch over a little one, but during her naps, or when family comes out to play with her, then I can get a lot done.
I’m really looking forward to this summer. I really want this property to become everything that it can be. Last year we did some work on the house to improve its structural integrity, but now that’s squared away and I want to work on the two acres of land. I’m really happy that it’s all finally coming together and I can’t wait to see the result once everything is really underway!