Thursday, January 29, 2009

More early spring activity

Look, tiny baby leeks just waiting to go in the soil!  Leeks have not in the past been a big garden crop for folks in Eastern North Carolina, so I don't really know what to expect from a spring planting.  I imagine they could have been planted in late fall, but I am excited to try them out here in late winter.  I was thrilled to find these beautiful plants near home at our local "down east" nursery in Williston.  Nothing is more fun this time of year then stepping into a nursery's greenhouse filled with young transplants just putting out their first leaves; unless it is getting to locally buy leek and onion sets for the garden, in January!  These babies will go in the ground as soon as I figure out where I want them.  (I once set up a beautiful picnic dinner in a greenhouse full of spring vegetable transplants, in February, in Pennsylvania.  My husband, who prefers to eat dinner in a chair at a table, did not quite get the same thrill as I did.)

Note the red spring coloration on the blueberry stems, as well as the buds swelling and almost ready to open.  Don't tell the garden it is still winter; the plants believe otherwise.  The hens are thrilled it is time to change out the garden plants.  With essentially nothing left for them to destroy, I let them out over the weekend to enjoy the yard.  They stuffed themselves with the fresh green weeds that are happily growing throughout the lawn.

Finally, a little late, here is a photo of the orangequats as I prepared then for orangequate marmalade a few weeks back.   Aren't they beautiful?  The marmalade is not so bad either.