Spring = a whole lot of green + new life

Do you like spring?

I know, streets are dusty on a sunny day, or a bit muddy on a rainy day. But how about that feeling that gets you all giddy because the days are brighter, and the air is warmer, and the birds are just so happy and there’s new grass popping up everywhere?

You should have seen the robin party taking over the Russian olive tree behind our house. Rain or shine, the fun is on.

Because it is all irresistible

I love the anticipation of seeing who made it through the winter in our little garden. As of now, I found tiny new oregano leaves popping up from under the dry, scraggly bush of last year’s. Then there’s tarragon, a personal favourite, chamomile and lemongrass. The everlasting thyme, and lemon thyme (ever tried this one?), plus chives and spearmint.

Mint is loved in our home but what a ruthless invader! However, it gets away with it (pun?) because it becomes a bug hotel and eatery in late summer, which is lovely to be witness to with a camera ready.

I hope you use herbs in your cooking and around your home. If you’ve never really delved into it but would like to, here’s one of my favourite herbalists to check out. Personally, I love sipping a cup of spearmint, lemongrass or sage tea (or all three combined) any time of day. Or as a summer evening treat on the patio when the cricket chirping abounds and the city noise is but a distant hum.

Planning to grow some food this year?

Will you try it? It counts, even if it’s just a bit. It’s tempting, isn’t it? Gardening and playing in the dirt in general is good for your microbiome (more on this in a future post), and also for your mood and mental health.

I pulled out my blue box of seeds and started rummaging through for the ones that could be planted now: arugula, kale, radishes and beets. Ambitious, I know. It’s silly how exciting this gets, but truth be told, nothing compares to that first spring harvest.

It blows my mind that plants that appear so fragile to our eyes have survived the -27 Celsius cold snaps of this past winter.

But wait, there’s more!

Oh yes, the strawberries. They are spreading from one garden bed to another knowing that none the of the trespassers will we pulled out but only redirected. Because strawberries are yummy and spectacular nutrition-wise. They are rich in fibre and anti-inflammatory compounds; great for brain and heart health, and if you eat them regularly, they can lower your risk of certain cancers. Not a bad way to keep healthy, is it? Speaking of berries, which are your favourite?

Hard to choose, right? To make it harder yet, I have added some extra bushes around our little garden last year: currants, red and black, both of which I grew up with and love; jostaberry and boysenberry – I will share photos when the time comes; goji berries; and lastly, black and yellow raspberries to complement the red ones.

If by now I have you wonder about the size of our garden, let me say that it’s not big. But that’s the most amazing thing about gardens: you can do a lot with them, no matter the size. I am still learning and playing with ours, which includes lots of mistakes and questionable results at times, but that’s life. Lessons in humility and resilience, right?

And more yet!

Also, have you seen the wildflowers popping up everywhere? On the trails near our home there are lots (and lots) of buttercups, brave and yellow little suns ready to withstand chilly nights and frosty mornings, and as of few days ago, yellow bells too. And we’re just getting started. If winter weather can at times be an excuse for snuggling under blankets (not when you have a dog, that is), that’s no longer the case.

I hope you get out to savour the change of seasons. Don’t let mud, dust and rainy days cut into your spring joy. Speaking of dogs, ours does bring in her fair share of sand and muddy bits, but oh, the joy of stomping in puddles and just-thawed water bodies! The joy is contagious, and that’s the greatest side effects of all.

Here’s to a glorious spring!

 

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