That is how I look at the month of January. Some things have a new year’s start in September, such as the school year, some in October, such as the holiday season, but January is the starting block for a gardener; this gardener, anyway.
November and December have been ending points for us in the Northern gardens, and while we are in the depth of winter the first stirrings of our gardening desire and instincts begin. We are done with the wreaths and berries, the flower bed cleanup is an old memory, and we begin the dreaming that results in our plans and new seedlings of late winter/early spring flats. This is a time of research in our gardening books, lustful perusings of the garden catalogs, with their seductive, if slightly deceitful, pictures of perfect blooms on the healthiest of plants in impossibly full borders of color and abundance. Every tomato tempts us, every flower is possible to grow, every ornamental bush and tree sings its siren song. The work of choices and the grand garden season plan asserts itself from every year of our hard earned experience, and all the the friendly warning and advising voices of other gardeners. Our season has begun.
For me, it is worse than usual this year since with the unseasonable warmth I can almost taste the garden to come! I have been doing little odd jobs outside, and mulched a bit more. In my flip-flops, no less. Pulled out a weed here and there, walked around the garden as I often do in the early spring; but Ohio holds more cold- it always does. I remind myself not to get delusional about any garden growth yet. However, this year I have my plant lights set up and the seed starting supplies leftover from last years good intentions. I will likely test the last year’s unplanted seeds by sprouting them in a damp paper towel. Flats of little plants are more a reality than in previous years, everything is ready. Full of hope and high aspirations- that’s me in 2008.