After a cold, wet, gloomy March we entered a cold, wet, gloomy April. However, Mother Nature will only wait so long, so spring has finally arrived on the Far Side.
The asparagus is coming up – three weeks later than last year – and the alder trees are leafing out. Self-sown violas are popping up all over and we are once again enjoying meals from the garden. (Kale shoots are a particular favourite.) The ground has been too wet and cold to plant potatoes, so the “early” potatoes are going to be late this year. The wind storms have continued but the wildflowers are poking their heads through the fallen branches. The grass has been slow to grow, which has meant little grazing time for the sheep while the pasture areas are vulnerable. However, they are enjoying the prunings from the blueberry bushes and rapidly-growing salmonberry and Robert is feeding them super-deluxe hay and alfalfa.
We still have two ewes that haven’t lambed yet, but after heavy losses the flock is now healthy and the lambs are getting fat. Little Zuzu is still a runt, but she enjoys sneaking through the fence to eat the emerging shoots in the vineyard. Every year a couple of lambs have been particularly mischievous. This year, Marda is the life of the party. She loves to race around the barn and will prod the other lambs to join in.
Despite the gloomy weather, the abundant new life and an occasional glimpse of blue sky lift our spirits and remind us of what’s to come. The air is soft and sweet. The bird chorus awakens us. Enjoy this transition to the warm and sunny days ahead.