Why do they torment me so? The catalogs arrive, filled with color and fragrance and promises of hedonistic pleasure, some of their pages are slick and shiny, others duller from choosing less glossy packaging materials.
Yes, today Mom and Mr Oro went and checked the mailbox, returning with two books, Cindy Margolis' Having A Baby...When the Old-Fashioned Way Isn't Working**, which I will be reviewing in the next couple of days courtesy of Megan from Penguin, and The Way We Never Were: American Families and the Nostalgia Trap, by Stephanie Coontz. I was pretty excited about those two, but then, beyond the bills and the statements and the alumni notification were the catalogs.
Oh yes, the catalogs.
White Flower Farm - if you're in or around Connecticut, this is a fun place to visit. Perhaps a bit on the pricey side, but good for window shopping of nothing else.
Seeds of Change - heirloom and rare veggies and flowers, source for heirloom apples, too
Select Seeds - antique and heirloom plants
Seed Savers - even more heirloom veggies. I meant to order from Seeds of Change, but did SS instead (did I mention I'd ordered stuff? Leek, lettuce mix, garlic, corn, cabbage, brussel sprouts, carrot, broccoli, and Charentais Melon).
Dutch Gardens - flower-o-rama. All of the sale plants I bought from them bloomed last year with two exceptions, the iris bulbs and the astilbe (which might bloom this year or next).
Burpee - standard and GM seed stock, but good for common varieties of veggies and fruits\
Double damn them for sending the bloody things in December/January. I mean, talk about garden porn, this is it!!!
I've got so much to learn, nevermind building my raised gardens before I can actually plant anything this year, so this spring is going to be a very steep learning curve on all counts. On the other leaf, I figure, how hard can it possibly be? Let's take a look at a few of the issues:
1) I haven't grown a vegetable from seed since, um, actually, I don't ever remember growing a vegetable from seed. Why from seed? Because I'm cheap, that's why.
2) da bear. And other critters, like deer, birds*, chipmunks, and squirrels. I know there are sprays for deer and rabbits, but bears? Hmm.
3) the front yard, which gets a mix of straight, noonday sun with morning and afternoon shade, is going to be for flower
4) the back yard, which, though north-facing, gets sun pretty much all day long, will be for the vegetables and the fruit trees (apples, blueberries - have the two bushes I planted last year survived? I doubt it)
5) the bamboo. I'll need to hire someone who cut it down once a month from April to November. For the next couple of years. With any luck, I'll be able to eradicate the growth, and fingers crossed, the roots may die completely if starved of food. Ditto for the goutweed, bittersweet, and that goddamned orange daylily that I thought was so pretty, but which turns out to be totally invasive. bah. Which brings me to...
6) how the hell do I grow perennials, especially the self-seeders, without unwittingly setting off an invasion?? Gah.
7) flowers, oh how I love thee. Alas, the money is simply not there. But if I did have lots of dosh to spend, I'd be buying roses, daffodils, tulips, lilies, foxgloves, lilacs, hollyhocks, iris, and those are just the ones I can think of off the top of my head.
I just had to get that off my more than ample chest. I don't suppose I've passed on the obsession...?
Oro, the ill, again, out
* oh, remember that hawk I saw two weeks ago? Turns out there's a nesting pair living somewhere in town - how cool is that?!
** it's looking good so far.