Winter is the perfect time to dream, visualize and plan a garden. Fortunately, the maritime climate of the Pacific Northwest makes it possible to start planting bare-root fruit trees and roses in mid-to late-winter (late Feb to early March).
It is snowing again! In the past few days, we have been inundated with more than 7” of snow. Making snowmen and snow angels has been so delightful. The trees are covered with snow and there are icicles on the roof. It’s winter wonderland in my garden.
One of the big pluses of living in the Pacific Northwest is the abundance of natural areas all around us, even in urban and sub-urban settings. Some of us have property adjoining the woodlands, while some have lush ravines and streams flowing through their environs. This beauty is sometimes, marred by piles of yard waste dumped across the fence into the natural area.
As I was picking out some laurels for a client at Flower World, a strong gust of wind brought in a warm, sweet scent of burnt sugar. Caramels, cotton candy, butterscotch – I wanted them all. I looked around and saw a row of my favorite Katsura trees growing at the edge of the nursery.
All around my neighborhood, I see several apple trees laden with ripe fruits, ready to be picked. Apple harvest season has begun. Usually, the best apples get eaten fresh or cooked into pies and sauces. But what does one do with the misshapen ones or the slightly bruised ones?
Good news! The cherry tomatoes in my yard are starting to ripen. I plucked one off the vine today and tasted it. Yum-O!! The red ‘Sweet 100’ stands up to its name – crisp, sweet and juicy. The ‘Yellow Pear’ looks gorgeous. It has a milder taste and is a little soft on the inside. I am waiting for more tomatoes to ripen so I can make this Cherry Tomato Orzo Salad with my own harvest.