Grit Blogs > Another Kind of Drew

Garden Bulbs: Anticipating Blooming Onions

A photo of Drew OdomI was sincerely hoping that by this time of year I would have several posts up about the transformation of brown, dead, winter-laden grass transitioning into wonderful blades of summertime glory. I was hoping that I would have several sets of Flickr pics showing our gardens decorated with little sprouts as if the dirt were little chocolate cupcakes adorned with tasty sprinkles. But alas, I cannot.

Winter hit hard this year and it isn’t done yet from what I hear. In fact, the weather channel is talking of snow flurries as late as tomorrow afternoon. Now I don’t believe in wives tales, per se, or even signs of spring but didn’t that groundhog see his shadow or something halfway constructive?

The onion bed is made.

This you must know though. I am hard headed. When I awoke Saturday morning to no ice in the chicken waterer and no crunch under my feet as I navigated my way out to the yard I promised the day would not disappear in vain. I would make something of it yet.

Two days prior Pan and I had purchased some onion bulbs at the feed and seed in a mad attempt at making spring come. We had no plans other than to have them ready at the first peak of 50 degree weather. I knew what bed they would find a home in, and I even had some compost and soil ready to be laid. So when that mercury jumped to 53, I must have looked like a pasty college student headed to the waves of Panama City, Florida, on Spring Break. NOTHING could slow me down.

By afternoon we had turned the compost and laid it in. We had added some sprinklings of chicken manure for good measure. We had pressed the sweet onion bulbs into their earthen home. We gently watered the entire plot and carefully covered it all with hearty straw. What a great feeling! Spring had sprung if only for 2 or 3 hours.

As the afternoon sun fell from overhead and the wind started to bring in the night air we sat on the porch looking out at our first bed of the season. What a sight! I gathered up our tools and headed to the barn to put everything away. I took one last look though – anticipating an early summer harvest – and said under my breath, “Take that Phil! Take that!”

anotherkindofdrew
3/10/2010 8:43:54 AM

@Cindy - I have to be honest. I am looking out the window at 41 degrees and rain and I am thinking I jumped the gun. Perhaps Phil go the best of me? Not sure. Whatever the case, we'll all be wrist deep in dirt soon enough. Cross country skiing last week? Really? WOW. That just blows my mind. I was wearing short sleeves last week.


cindy murphy
3/10/2010 8:27:38 AM

'Mornin', Andrew. It's kind fun checking in here, and seeing what different stages of 'spring is going to arrive soon, I just know it' the Grit bloggers are experiencing. We're way behind here in Michigan. I was still cross-country skiing last week, but when a thin strip of grass along the front walk showed up, I knew my skiing days for the season were about over. The thin strip developed into large patches, and in a few minutes I'm about to head out on my bicycle instead of skis. The ground is still frozen though - yesterday I tried to pull the evergreen boughs and holly branches from my flower boxes in an attempt to get-with-the-season-at-hand by getting rid of all traces of Christmas decorations. No such luck - they were still frozen solid, stuck in the soil until warmer days. I guess St. Patrick's Day will be celebrated with evergreen boughs instead of shamrocks. Hey, at least they're still (mostly) green.


anotherkindofdrew
3/10/2010 8:08:42 AM

@Oz Girl - well, I will settle for giving some encouragement. In fact, that is what I aim to do anyway so I can't wait to see what y'all get going soon.


oz girl
3/10/2010 7:31:01 AM

We are all sooo very antsy for spring to really be here, for good! Since I live just a lil bit further south than Nebraska Dave, on the KS/OK border, our crocuses sprouted their bright yellow heads earlier in the week... the official harbinger of spring! :-) Although I haven't put any seed in the ground yet, and that only because we don't have any established garden plot area yet, I did start a few herbs in the house - parsley, chives, basil. I just couldn't wait! But I'm hoping in a few weeks time we can get some things started outdoors. Your pic of freshly composted dirt and straw gives me hope!


anotherkindofdrew
3/10/2010 6:33:18 AM

Can't wait to see what the spring brings for you Nebraska Dave. My sister lives in Iowa so I am acutely aware of the growing hazards. My work didn't come without some clean up as well. In fact, I am not showing photos of the tilled garden spots because they need so much TLC. I was hoping this weekend would allow for some more work but we are supposed to be met with more rain, rain, rain.


nebraska dave
3/9/2010 10:27:51 PM

Drew, we finally have had enough warm weather to melt the snow. Now all I see is dirty grass. The green hasn’t started here just yet. It looks as though there will be a lot of Spring clean up from the long hard Winter. A plethora of fallen sticks litter the yard. Gardening really doesn’t start here in Nebraska, except for the daring and brave at heart, until April and sensitive plants go in the ground after Mother’s Day. The challenge here is to have a fully ripen tomato by 4th of July. My gardening schedule will seriously begin around the second week in April. The snow has only melted off the garden this week. The last couple days have caused a great break through to the ground from dirty snow. It’s still too wet and mushy to really get out in the yard but if the rain stops, it won’t take long to dry up. Perhaps in a couple more weeks Spring Crocus will be peeking through the ground. I planted 100 new Crocus last fall. I can’t wait to see their colorful display declaring that Winter is over and Spring has truly arrived. The Crocus will be followed up by the Tulips, Daffodils, and Iris blooms. I love those Spring flowers but they just don’t last long enough. Along about Memorial Day the Peonies will start blooming. I like them too. I expect you can tell that Spring is my favorite season. Drew I’m with you. Take that Phil. Take that.