It seems like I blinked and suddenly summer was well underway: balmy nights and the smell of neighbors' barbecues in the air, and me with winter coats and hats still piled in our front hall, and the bulky feather duvet taking up valuable real estate on a chair in the bedroom.
That stuff all still needs to be dealt with, but today I hauled myself over to the garden center and ended up buying twice as many plants as I'd intended to. That must happen to everyone, right? It's so tempting ... like all those different varieties of heirloom tomatoes, with their descriptions as over-the-top and escapist as any clothing catalog copy. "Sun-kissed, deep-golden fruit bursts with tropical flavor" -- about a tomato! And yes, I came home with two heirloom varieties, that sun-kissed tropical one, and also "Brandywine Red," which I probably chose because it reminded me of "The Hobbit." Also some basil, part of my original plan, tarragon (nice with fingerling potatoes from the farmers market), and a trio of interesting-looking lettuces.
Unfortunately our rascally porch squirrel will probably dig everything up and make short work of it all by sunrise tomorrow. I found a couple of nuts buried in the old lettuce planter, a storeroom he evidently forgot to raid once winter set in. I'm hoping, perhaps naively, that because I got larger plants this time (last year I tried seedlings) he won't be able to do as much damage.
I'm thinking of attempting to craft some twig teepees for the tomatoes, in an effort to create "vertical interest" for our "garden." I've got some sweet pea and morning glory vines (more impulse buys) started by the porch railing as well.
And for a last stab at atmosphere, a pot of lavender and some miniature daisies (not their real name, but their identification tag is all the way out on the porch) for some South of France je ne sais quois. The lavender just happens to perfectly match our awesome and cheap new chairs from Target, though their color looked more navy then purple under the fluorescents in the store. But ca ne fait rien: turns out it was all part of a grander scheme.