Oct 18, 2010

"Between the Hägg and the Syren"
Part III

About three days before this picture was taken we knew we were running out of time.
The garden was fertilized and tilled but we hadn't started the planting. 
If our "born and raised in Texas" friend, Jim Whitteker, was here, he would say:
"Let's git 'er done!"
I had my gardening wagon, I had my seeds, I had my chicken manure, I had my Earthway Garden Seeder.

We always start with a row of flowers - in this area they put in a row of flowers about every fifth row for beauty -  and then next comes the salad row.  This year we tried some new seeds such as the Baby Salad Blend that sported several types and colors of lettuce blended together.  We also tried sequential planting of the radishes and lettuces to see if we could prolong the season a bit and have the fresh vegetables into the Fall.  

 We had never used seed tapes before but when we needed more beet seeds and the supplier was out, we figured this was a good chance to give it a whirl.  Hans always prepares the seed beds for me, and this time he also helped with some of the planting which was a real blessing with not a lot of time left.  You can see the evidence of how my brain was working if you look at the neatly printed wood stake to the right.  I read the seed packet wrong and instead of writing the Swedish word for spinach (spenat), I wrote the Italian word (spenati) instead...there was some fairly intense teasing about my "italian spenati" and how it might taste when it came up :)
I was excited to find a new strain of mangold (swiss chard) called Bright Lights which promised to have almost neon stems and veining of several different colors (so fun in the salad bowl when the shoots are tender!)

And through it all I had the "Bindi Escort Service" to keep me company.

 It doesn't seem to matter where I am or what I'm doing, she finds me and makes herself a part of it.
She bit up the seed packets, she nested on my apron, she laid on each and every item three seconds before I needed it.  When Gustav walked by and saw her gnawing on the seed packet he said,
"Looks like we aren't the only ones who love our greens".

When we finally had all the rows planted and all the bedding plants in as well, it was time for the fiberduk.

In this climate, once the planting is done, you must cover everything with this white webby fabric-like product to protect it and hold the warmth in the ground so the seeds will sprout. 
And in one of the world's greatest examples of
       Gustav, asked to bring us over a "few" bricks to weigh down the lengths of  fiberduk,  took the brand new bells and whistles tractor, loaded up a couple of armfulls into the front bucket, and drove it two inches to the garden's edge.

But, in the end result,
 here it is.
All fertilized, all plowed, all planted, all covered,

So how much time elapsed
"Between the Hägg and the Syren"?

It was 19 days.

In that time we cleaned, fertilized, tilled, planted and covered the garden - cleaned and prepared the hay barn and travelled to the village of Åsmon for the repair of the ventilation fan - sheared all the sheep - sprouted and planted all the seed potatoes - travelled to Genbäcks in the village of Åsele for all our bedding plants and garden supplies, bringing back a new Hägg tree and a hedge of new lilacs for planting - took down all the lights on the Advent tree, took down the tree itself and sawed it into firewood - sold the old tractor and picked up the new tractor - got all the dung out - harrowed all the fields - cleaned all the machines and put them away.

We made it!

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