Des Moines Garden “Winter”

I chatted with Cathy Barash for an update on the Des Moines garden today. She tells us: “Winter has finally arrived and we had two snows within a week and now have six inches on the ground. This is finally giving plants some protection and temperature consistency since in the last couple of months temperatures have ranged from highs in the 60’s and plunging to 7 below. Daffodils were up as much as much as 6” and now are under the snow and some of our fruit trees and lilacs were showing swollen buds. I expect we will have a less colorful spring. Time will tell. The neighbors free range chickens “free ranged” and on a sultry Thanksgiving day, broke loose and feasted on the newly sprouted seeds of my Tyfon covercrop ….the eggs were delicious. Fortunately, this was the perfect year to have removed most of the plants in my garden and start over.”

Cathy has been busy meeting writing deadlines and will begin making posts as spring and warmer weather allows more gardening. We look forward to news and photos of how her Des Moines neighborhood garden progresses.

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The Gardener (a poem)

Tonight I was scheduled for to give a container gardening talk at the Mennonite Village, a retirement center in Albany, OR. This active garden club has many members who are lifelong gardeners or retired farmers. Weather was foul so I was happily surprised to find a nice crowd inside the brightly lit meeting room. When I finished I sat down and a sweet faced woman began softly reciting a poem to me. With her permission I’m pleased to share her poem on this blog. Katherine has been a gardener all her life, in Oregon and in the Matanuska valley of Alaska.

I till the ground in the early spring
and listen while the robins sing
and see the blossoms on the trees
and hear the humming of the bees

Carefully I plant each tiny seed
and care for their every need
with the summer sun and a gentle rain
their full growth they will attain

And blossoming flower or giant tree
someday these tiny seeds will be
and every day I plainly see
my great God’s wondrous love for me
—–Katherine E. McRay