Funny weather. I mean, isn't it always? It is a mild (by polar vortex standards, which recalibrated everything I knew about cold) 38'F/3'C - acceptable in the January sun. I walked out onto the deck in bare feet to photograph the blueberry buds.
It occurred to me, in the middle of the night - as these things do - that I will need another blueberry bush if this one is to set good fruit. Cross pollination with a different cultivar. In Brooklyn our neighbour, inspired by ours, planted one on her next door terrace. She occupies the same space in terms of square feet. Her rent, she told me, shortly before we left, was $600 less than ours. And ours was set to be raised by another $600 per month.
Whaddaya gonna do?
Well. We did it.
Perhaps I can give a blueberry to our landlord to plant in his garden. Or perhaps I just have to squeeze it in on the terrace. And does it matter? It occurred to me, too, that perhaps I should sketch the layout of the terrace the way I would for a client. Watercolours and everything. I have rarely applied the principles - if you can call them that - I use to design design gardens to my own efforts, which are a far more loose and frankly undisciplined eruption of instinct, whimsy and necessity. Like my mother I tend towards plant collection, never able to say no to something new and interesting, or simply in bloom at that moment.
I think the rosemary - that had survived a winter or two on the Brooklyn rooftop, is toast. The figs are both alive - I scratched their branches and saw green. One clematis has put out shoots. Idiot. But amazing, anyway. The roses never dropped their last leaves, which droop like camouflage scales from their branches where new red buds are waiting to break.
Seeds have arrived. Low tech. The shiso is to send to Lily, and one packet for myself. I didn't plant any last year and regretted it. The nasturtiums are ostensibly for leaves. I am going to miss my usual fava bean and pea shoots this year. I suppose I could plant some. Should I? I miss the order of having just food in one place, on the old roof farm. The Nicotiana are for the hummingbirds (well, you never know) and for scent and for tallness. I want tallness. Before tallness, of course, there will be Waiting. I'm not good at that part, which is why so many of my annual plants during the growing year are impulse buys - already rooted and growing and about to bloom. But I have decided to exercise restraint.
At least, that is what I say now.
It will be an interesting year.
Speaking of seeds. This was very nice. Their new catalogue. Thank you, Botanical Interests.