This month will go down as the wackiest April in recent memory. We had some unseasonably warm days followed by a handful of cold, grey, wet days. Yesterday was sunny one minute, and literally hailing ice pellets the next! Thankfully I did manage to set aside a few hours on one of the warmer days to clean up my street-side garden. I did very little clean up last fall and it had devolved over the winter months into an embarassing mess. My clean up consisted of a few basic tasks:
Just a reminder that the Book Launch Party is coming up this Wed night at the Gladstone Hotel in Toronto. Details can be found here.
The view on my deck is looking somewhat more inviting today. I did not take a photo but it is warmer and brighter with remnants of snow and ice.
Today’s view out on my deck.
Well gang, it’s March which means it’s time to get on the seed situation. I’ve gone as far as to move some plants around and hook up the *super fancy* electric warming mat. My lemongrass LOVES it, making me feel a little guilty about replacing it with a tray of seeds. I have to admit that I really haven’t spent much time looking through seed catalogues. I looked through the Richters catalogue but only got as far as deciding that this year I would suck up the $15 price tag and buy that wasabi plant I talked myself out last year.
The Summer Solstice, or “Midsummer’s Day” has its origins in paganism as a celebration of various Sun Gods. Cultures everywhere still celebrate this day, which marks the middle of summer, not, as with today’s calendar, its beginning.
SOLSTICE – sol stare: “standing still sun”
- In Spain, the eve of solstice is called “Night of the Verbena”.
- The solstice is the best time of the year to gather herbs.
- Five plants have magic properties on this night: rue, roses, St. John’s wort, vervain (verbena) and trefoil.
- The solstice is a time to leap and dance around fires lit on hilltops, celebrating the sun at the height of its strength and encouraging a big harvest. The higher you jump, the higher your crops will grow.
- The June full moon is called the “strawberry moon” or “mead moon”.
- Gathering fern seed and rubbing it over your eyes on the stroke of midnight will help you to see “the little people”: solstice is said to be the best night to see faeries.
- Pick St. Johns Wort on this night—it will help you discover who your lover will be.
Over May 24 weekend we did more work in the side garden. After several years we have finally expanded the garden to take up all the space next to the sidewalk. Unfortunately it looks really unbalanced now. One side has lush growth and is surrounded by fencing but the other side is all new, small perennials with no fencing. Hopefully it will even out a bit as the summer progresses and the plants grow.