This week we had typical March weather—an edge between winter and spring. Temperatures hovering around freezing, breezy, some rain, the landscape muted and, to my eyes, beautiful with greys, browns, and other quiet colors. But underneath it all the sounds, smells and sights of Spring—pale greens and reds in the tree branches, green shoots in the fields and garden, peepers and migrating birds, furious honking and hissing matches of Canada geese staking out territory in the pasture, and that Spring growy smell on the breeze. Winter has truly departed, and we only glimpse the back of it as it disappears around some kind of edge.
I keep thinking about planting seeds, but it is always better for me to wait until the first week of April. When I start seeds in March, by the time it is safe to plant them outside they are root-bound or leggy. The parsley, onions and basil planted by my husband are all thriving inside now, but the flower seeds are still waiting in their paper packets. Soon, soon!
The edges in my garden are still not stable—in some cases I’ve had to retreat where I overextended (like the giant herb wheel on the south lawn—more on that another day), while in most places the garden is still expanding, pushing back the shrinking lawn. I have a lot of experience with garden edging. I think I have tried every edging method except for plastic kinds, which I just don’t want in my soil. The method I have settled on as the most effective is a steep sharp ditch and a packed down one-foot (at least) wide flat “path” or dry moat between the lawn and the garden. There is a picture of one here.
In some places, the garden is edged also with a low stone wall. I strongly recommend against having your lawn smack up right against a stone wall. The grass happily runs through the stones to invade the garden and the stones only serve to protect the grass or weeds.
The stack of flower catalogs by my bed still gets some use–it is still dream/plan time, but gardening gear is out and my gardening jeans have fresh dirt ground into the knees. March is in-between time.