We have officially been on the right side of Winter now for a bit, and as I was diligently potting up my tiny tomatoes into larger pots, destined for the ground in a couple of weeks, it occurred to me that – we completely missed Mud Season this year! Ah, mud season – that oh so Vermonty time of year when it seems that Mother Nature hasn’t laughed enough at us quite yet – she’s frozen us, chilled us to the bone, and NOW, when it seems we might get a break, she throws us a few charmed days in March that are warm, delicious and life-giving. The ground thaws… or so it seems. The top couple of inches are what actually thaws, while the frost-heaving depths stay solidly frozen. What that creates is a skating rink of sloppy slippery 6″ of mud that is tough to navigate, soul-crushing and utterly disappointing. That sun was so promising!
Well, those normal feelings of being hoodwinked by nature with warm days to only have to deal with mud were skewed this year with the jump from solid Winter to solid Spring. A couple of days ago, I actually said the words, “Man! This is straight-up Summer!” Then my family in Denver, CO started talking about snow. And now here we are on Mother’s Day with my family in Colorado shoveling (one last time?!), and us here in gorgeous Vermont basking in the delicious smells of Spring-flowering trees, first-mowed grass, Windex-streaked windows getting their Spring-cleaning. I have to take pause and think, “Is is really over? Did we make it out of Winter completely, or is there one more round to go?”
I wish I had a crystal ball for times like this – when all my plants are large and in charge in their pots in the greenhouse, leaning ever closer to the door, to the outside, to the unending depths of soil to sink their eager roots into. I want to smoosh them into the soil, water them in, raise my face to the sun and take a deep satisfying breath knowing they are safely snuggled in and able to take care of themselves.
Not knowing what Nature has in store for us, we march onward with “The Plan” that was construed in deepest Winter as the ideal we should strive for in 2015. So far, it’s working. So far, we are able to cross things off that our Winter CEO-selves told our Summer Farmhand-selves to do each day, each week, each month. It feels good to cross things off this list, but we find ourselves blinking up at the sky each day wondering if we’ve forgotten something – it’s all feeling easy. A little too easy…
So, I’ve decided to simply take notice of the seamless flow between tasks, the windless mornings to handle plastic, the skills of our crew, the well-oiled-machine-ness of it all and just appreciate all of it. Since it feels like summer, I’m going to treat it like summer, unless I’m told otherwise. I’ll follow “The Plan”, drink in the smells, lift my face to the sun, sniff my dog’s sun-warmed fur, and pour myself another chilled glass of something good. Happy mid-Spring, everyone – drink it in!