Lover of sunshine that I am, it sure was nice to get a couple of true rain days. My little world here at Woodland Cottage is washed fresh and clean. It’s sparkling in the intermittent sunshine this morning after heavy rain overnight. This is rain day #2. I’m getting lots accomplished. I realized yesterday that it was the first rain day we’ve had this long Spring that simply didn’t allow us to work outside. We’ve sloshed through all the showery others.
We’re now in that “in-between” time here in the magical Mid-Atlantic–between the flowers of full Spring and the first flowers of early Summer. It is almost Hydrangea Time.
Rain days allow me to: Write my Spring newsletter (I’m tardy by two months :/–and yes, I did get it written and to my talented friend, Peter, who does the layout ). Vacuum the floor. Write a blog post. Catch up on billing and paperwork. Get started on some magazine articles (the deadlines loom). Delete the junk from my e-mail inbox. Clean off my desk.
Sunday, I spent a day in my own garden. I got most of the pots and the windowboxes planted (and fertilized), all the rest of the houseplants outside and organized, and some planting and transplanting accomplished–just before the rain. In my brain, I feel like I’m so late this year because the gardens are so advanced compared to the usual mid-May. The reality is I’m finishing some things earlier–I usually don’t get around to the pots and annuals until after Memorial Day. Some things will wait until after Memorial Day–I want to pick up a few favorites in Wilmington that weekend–but it feels good to be this much ahead.
I have some new additions this year in my front yard: giant, white Alliums (flowering onions). The variety is ‘White Giant’. I love them. I’m astounded, also, that they all stood up to the heavy rains last night. That surprises me.
One of my clients was cleaning out their pond earlier this Spring and had a huge crop of tadpoles. I brought home a couple dozen and put them in the lower pond. I’ve been so busy, I haven’t had time to check and see how they’re doing. Sunday, I took a look and saw a few–they seem fatter and happy. Then during a water break in the kitchen, I looked out the window and saw this guy/gal sunning him/herself on a mossy rock by the upper pond. Because my friend Mike Ferrara and I are working our way through the ‘Lord of the Rings’ series on Sunday nights (and because I name just about everything), I’ve decided to call him/her Frodo.
My friend Ronn Payne gave me some gourd birdhouses this Spring. I’d admired them at his mother’s place in the Virginia countryside, where he grows the gourds. He surprised me with three. I hung them immediately: one in a Live Oak out front (I can see it from the dining room); one in a Crapemyrtle on the side (I can see it from where I’m typing right now); and one in a Darlington Oak in the back (which I can see from my downstairs desk and bedroom). Very quickly, a tiny little bird with the most wonderful song (very garbled, happy and sing-songy) moved in, the same kind of bird in all three. They are very energetic, and so fun to watch and listen to. You cannot imagine the joy I get from “my” birds, all types.
What a Spring.
This post was written by Jeff Minnich on May 15, 2012