Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Chives and Lemon Balm

I guess Ray misses his birds. We took all the feeders down last year because Jason saw a rat under one of them. This year we have Bomber the JRT. As soon as I told Ray I was participating in the Great February Bird Count he went out and bought seed, thistle and thistle feeder, suet and a new suet feeder and a new seed feeder. They are already up. He and Chris were so jazzed by the pictures on another GFBC blogger that they have been looking for a remote camera to aim at the feeders. Sounds good to me, I like the pics!

So far this morning I have only seen one little Junco at the feeder along the back fence. Nothing new for the count.

The spring like weather that has welcomed February to the Pacific North-west makes me feel like I should get my hands dirty already. I only worked on the herb garden but still felt like I got something done. At least, as long as I didn't let myself look around too much. In the big blue pot that holds my rambling herbs, the lemon balm is already showing herself. Coming up through what is left of last years comfrey. Tea time will come soon enough.

Over in the corner of the garden I cleaned out what was once a healthy patch of parsley. I actually forgot that there were chives in that area. Chives are always a surprise in spring. The grass gets a little rambunctious and finds its way into the gardens where I just grab handfuls of green and pull it out. The scent of onion, sharp and clean always comes wafting up, warning me that I should think about what I am doing before I pull out any more "grass." I wanted to run in and bake a potato to celebrate the early herb, but as you can see, there really isn't even enough yet to snip.

The little bay tree in the square blue pot seems to have survived the cold winter. There are two rosemarys in their first year growing in the little herb garden... at least I hope they are. I have heard that rosemary will survive in the garden as long as it does not get too cold in town. Couldn't leave rosemary out all winter in Robe Valley, strictly a potted plant that had to winter on the window seal. This winter apparently was bad by flat-lander standards. The Rosemary did not turn black like it would in the valley, but, what I assume was new growth just before the snow, is drooping over and looking a little sad.

No sign of tarragon yet. That was an herb that was iffy in the valley. Some years it came back, some years it did not. All the lavender looks like it is going to survive. So does the marjoram (another iffy come-back in Robe).

I'm sure there will be nasturtiums. The seeds from the two that I planted last year are everywhere. I guess the rats don't like those.


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