Finally the snow is gone from the garden. Nothing survived the winter and the remains of the leeks, kale, parsley and collards - all things that did overwinter the year before - have been removed and the garden beds raked to an even surface.
Two days ago (April 9) I sowed seeds for lettuce and beets in that part of the garden that gets sun later in the day and also planted peas. The soil temperature was at least 44 degrees Fahrenheit.
There was a report in the newspaper a week or so ago that the very cold winter killed many grape buds and so I am wondering whether our Concord grapes were affected. I think there are buds on what remains after my pruning but won't know until I see buds actually swelling, opening and growing. Perhaps nature did the pruning for me.
I am building frames from old fence slats to fill with compost and use to grow carrots and potatoes. They will be near or on the driveway. I will fill the potato frames with compost from OCRRA but for the carrot frame(s) will first sift the compost through a screen of 1/4 in hardware cloth. It is a tedious process. OCRRA also sells 1/4 inch screened compost through some of the garden centers and I may decide to buy some of that to make the process easier.
We will open the pond today or tomorrow - that is, install the pump and get the system going. After this harsh winter we did not expect any of the frogs to have survived and their bodies have begun to appear. But they did a little better here than in the swimming pool from which they came.
The rhubarb has begun to appear through the gallon bucket of compost that was dumped on top of each plant last fall. Oops! I forgot that there is one rhubarb plant at the end of one of the beds. I just raked that compost into the bed the other day.