Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Surveying the garden

Whoops! almost all the snow is gone. For being so much of it, it vanished incredibly fast once we got a few days of thaw. Today temperatures are decent and the sun is warming, but in the shade it's still cold. I took a short walk in my back yard and down to the garden to see what's happening.
And with "the garden" I mean my community garden, Minton Stable Garden in Jamaica Plain. I was lucky enough to get a plot 6 years ago - now the waitlist is as long as there are plots in the garden, about 50.

And this is really how it started. From the very beginning I got hooked, and more and more so, and I spent as much time as I could there, and will continue to do, and now I have been on the committee for nearly 2 years as well.
The garden is a result of some very dedicated members of my neighborhood who wanted to create an urban oasis for the community. Hard work was invested, sometimes the discussions were heated, but the outcome is truly amazing.

In addition to the garden plots there are some community areas for play and recreation. A lot of thought went into the plantings and it's all natives lining the fences. Trees and shrubs such as arrowwood, elderberry, sassafras, viburnums and dogwoods, and many many others are now starting to produce flowers and berries. Some corners are kept unmowed to create little habitats for ground dwelling critters. I am very proud of this garden and would have a hard time leaving this neighborhood any time!

In my backyard I saw some little darlings forcing themselves through the remaining ice:

It's remarkable how some things seem completely undisturbed by having been buried under 3 feet of snow, and just bounce back to where they were before.

For once, a Rosemary that survived the winter.  Obviously snow is good for a lot of things.

My Swiss chard looks good already!

I always look out for these first...

Then I walked down to the garden. It was the same there: the leaves of my oriental poppies look completely fresh and green.

Looking out over the plots, it's hard to imagine the same place in 6 months. 
But it will be bustling and buzzing and blooming and exuberant and wonderful. There will be kids running down the aisles and there will be gardeners busy weeding and digging. Bees will buzz. Flowers will smell. You will see.


  1. Lucky you, to be so free of snow. Here in Saratoga, we were just beginning to see some grass at the edge of three-foot snow banks, but then we got socked with another foot of snow. But it will go fast, once the sun gets at it. How exciting to see all your plant shoots! Your community garden project sounds wonderful, especially the native plantings. I visited a new nature preserve near my home this fall and discovered the municipality had planted the parking area with Japanese Barberry, Burning Bush, and Tartarian Honeysuckle, just about the most noxiously invasive species imaginable.

  2. hi!
    That's sad. When will the word get out to the people who plan for those things? I'm pretty sure they're banned in MA, maybe they will be in NY soon too.

    Wishing you full sun for the rest of the week!