After that wonderful rainy spell, it is time to get at our gardens and yards. I am way behind on what needs to be done, and I suspect many of you are as well.
Teams and Work Groups. All of the team and work group leaders have received the rosters of the members of their groups along with contact information. They will be contacting you soon to coordinate who will work with what crops or activities. Our thanks go to Shelley (South Beds) and Matt and Beth (Open Area) for taking on the role of Mission Garden team leaders, along with me (North Beds). Please give them your full support to make their task easier. Additional thanks go to the smaller Work Group leaders: Annette (Labyrinth), Sandy (Flower Beds, Analisa and Bill (Herbs), Chuck (Orchard and Bees), and to Alex for assisting me with the composting.
Tough Winter on Trees: The early freeze last winter, along with an unusual pattern of weather, took a toll on many trees. There are many of the juniper bushes with brown needles this spring, and some varieties of pines also took a hit. Three of the cherry trees in our orchard were killed and need to be removed and replaced. (We may have some cherry wood available for those of you who like to cook with smokers.) Additionally, the east grove of silver poplars in the labyrinth are mostly dead. This stand was already in trouble last year and we had to cut out a major trunk two years ago. Not sure how we will deal with this.. Anyone have a chain saw large enough for the job?
Mission Garden Sprinklers: The rain put a halt to work on this, but I should be able to get it finished this week. At least there is no pressing need for watering right now. I could use some help finishing filling in the central line trench by Wednesday afternoon.
In the News: There is a regional magazine published in Bozeman that was titled Zone 4. The name has now changed to Rock Mountain Gardening and the spring edition was just delivered and is on the newsstands. There are several articles of interest. First is one on “Tasty Tomatillos” featuring our very own Beth and Matt along with their Salsa Verde recipe. (See page 42) Another article is on “Ripening Stubborn Tomatoes.” (Page 17) I have clipped that one for use later this summer. Should you be interested in a subscription to the magazine, go to, http://www.rockymountaingardening.com/.
Those Wonderful Chive Blossoms: I love those deep purple blossoms on our chives – usually the first bloom sin the garden. You can cut them and place them in vinegar and make and infusion to use for dressings and cooking. The hint (not too subtle) here is to cut them off before they start to throw seeds. Your clump of chives will come back nicely each year and keep expanding without seeding. But if you let them throw seeds, we will have chives coming up everywhere. Beth says she will take any you don’t need. Let me know if you want yours cut off. The same concern with seeding will come along as dill plants mature later this summer.
Herb Seminar: Thanks to many of you who provided quick feedback on scheduling the seminar. As of this morning, Gail T. has a conflict with the afternoon of the 30th and between she and me all of the Saturdays in June conflict with other commitments. Several of you suggested considering weekday evenings. I will be talking to Gail this afternoon and see what we can come up with.
That’s all for now. The sun just came out, and I am headed for the garden,