Tuesday, April 3

Reply to Michele: Early Spring in Maine

Dear Michele,

Take a close look  at the photo above. If you look carefully you can see our kitten, now quite a grown up cat who is about to celebrate her first birthday on April 22. She blends in- so look close. I can't go out into the garden or for a walk without her joining me.

Yes, spring arrived early in Maine. After old man winter came at Halloween with enough snow to cancel trick or treat, we had one of the mildest winters on record. Remember that cinnamon lettuce from last year? It survived the winter here.
We had such warm weather in March, getting up into the 80s, that we spent time at the beach. Some of our friends actually went swimming in Maine in March. We only dipped our feet in as the water was still quite frigid despite the air temperature.

The spring flowers are blooming earlier than usual, the forsythia is in bloom, and trees are budding. During the warm spell, my wonderful kids raked and cleaned up the garden for me. My son purchased a grape vine and several blueberry bushes he is going to put in soon.

The Egyptian onions and chives are already several inches tall.
Below you see my grandmother's jumbo crocus. These were around her hydrangea tree when I was growing up. She was so proud of them each spring. After she passed away and we were cleaning out the house, I dug some up to plant at my house. Good thing too because the new owners cut down the hydrangea and the remaining crocus are gone. But these bloom on, reminding me of my grandmother every spring.
I also have some tiny daffodils just starting to open up.
As I mentioned, my cats follow me around the garden. Today was no exception as I took photos of the flowers. The calico is Ashley (the boss lady at our house) followed by little Chloe. Note Chloe's cautious look. She has learned to respect the matriarch feline.
But, she refuses to be left out and leaps up into the cherry tree directly above the crocus. I do believe she posed for the camera! She's not going to play second fiddle to the other kitties at our house.
Back to gardening....below you see our indoor seed starts. This year I went with the store bought greenhouse with the pellets. We've had better luck than we did last year using egg cartons but still on some of the seedlings we've noticed that same fuzzy mold and have lost some seedlings that just wither away like they did last year. We will replant some more.  I'll keep you posted.
My kids prepared their raised beds and planted a variety of cool weather seeds.
So that's the update from Maine. As the earth comes to life I'll be posting more regular updates.
Happy Spring!
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