Personally I've had the rug pulled out from underneath me this past week and a half, with my mother in intensive care in the hospital. The only thing that has helped me to not feel overwhelmed, besides the love from my husband and daughters, has been to get outside and do some much overdue gardening.
I was looking forward to celebrating Earth Day this year with the students in my class. I had some fun activities planned, such as making a salad with the greens and herbs we grew in our classroom container garden. Unfortunately I am not at work while I deal with my mother's illness and care for my grandmother, so this will have to wait until I am back in the classroom next week.
This weekend when I was able to carve out a bit of time to power garden I realized that I was spending the Earth Day weekend how I should be spending it. I was doing something small, something personal and something real for the Earth.
I was excited to add homemade compost to my raised garden beds. We started backyard composting a year and a half ago and this was the first time I used any of it in my garden. As can be seen by the photo below, the garden beds look primed and ready for all the seedlings that are currently residing in my living room. The soil smells amazing; much better than the chicken manure I used last year before my own compost was ready. I was even more thrilled to do this because my neighbour finished building two more raised beds for me this past week, bringing my total to four.
My compost bin last fall, almost ready.
I had quite an ordeal weeding the beds and literally chopping down the kale trees that I had growing from last summer.
My kale and <ahem> garden, last October. I was still harvesting
leaves at this point. It was probably a foot taller this weekend.
Seriously, they were huge; the stalks were about two inches wide. I would have kept the kale leaves but they had gone to seed and tasted bitter.
All the weeds and leftover garden ready to be chopped for the compost bin.
After weeding I had some pleasant surprises; there were some more beets growing, which I picked for the greens, and the potatoes I started two years ago are coming along nicely. I'm happy to see my garlic growing, although I wish I'd planted more of it last fall as some have not come up.
I am looking forward to seeing how my garlic turns out.
I finished the afternoon planting some peas directly outside, to which I will add some that I have started inside. I've cheated a bit by purchasing a few pea plants from the garden store just so I see some green in the beds.
All my baby seedlings getting ready for the garden.
I have big plans for those four garden beds!
Happy Earth Day.