Monthly Archives: March 2015

Spring gardening, indoor edition

Indoor edition, because it’s 24 degrees out. On March 22. Which is technically spring, but Someone missed the memo. As usual.

This year, I’m planning to start plants from seed indoors, but it’s too early even for that – the packets say to start them 4-6 weeks before the average last frost, which, to be safe, I have to estimate will be around Memorial Day weekend. So I’ll start my tomatoes, herbs, and “bunny tails” (grass that’s fluffy on top, guess who that’s for) in April, and the radishes and sweet peas outside “4-6 weeks before the average last frost, or when the soil temperature is 40 degrees F.” (July?)

Meanwhile, I took cuttings from several of my healthy indoor plants to start some new little plants.

African violet

This happy African violet (above) donated a leaf (below). I’ve never started one African violet from another, but my mom says it’s possible. I had one of my four violets die over the winter, so I’m trying to replace it.


I’ve also been periodically cutting back my three mint plants and letting them root in water, so I planted a couple of those as well (one is in the red pot, above).

Succulent plant

This succulent (above) has been growing loopily all over the place, so I took a bit of root and a bit of growth from the top and started them in a new square container (below left; below right is another mint cutting).


The mystery plant from Trader Joe’s shed its orange flowers but is still growing healthy new leaves (below).


And all the herbs, somewhat improbably, made it through the winter: rosemary, mint, basil, chives, and parsley.

mint and rosemary

basil and chives

Lastly, I transplanted some miniature daffodils (paperwhites?) from the tiny pot they came in to a bigger pot.


It might be a lost cause, but we’ll see. Maybe I can move them outside when other spring flowers start poking their heads up, whenever that might be. (July?)

Yes, it’s springtime in New England! The time of year that the “it may be in the twenties, but at least it’s sunny” consolation starts wearing real thin, and everyone is sick of winter boots, and, upon seeing snowflakes begin to float down from the sky, has a reaction resembling PTSD.

Sudo in armchair

“I just want to go outside without my jacket.”


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Filed under plants, seasons

New routines

At the end of the day, I gather up some of Sudo’s toys from where she has scattered them about the living room and put them back on her bed in our bedroom. In the morning, she carries them out one by one (“incoming,” we say to each other as she marches through with a yellow teddy bear in her mouth) and distributes them around the house. This is pretty much the extent of her “playing.” It’s not uncommon that we’ll throw a toy for her when she’s in a playful mood, she’ll catch it once, and when we throw it again, she lets it hit her in the face. Playtime over. Commence eighteenth nap of the day.

This morning, though, I noticed one of her toys in an unusual place.

Notice the stuffed duck on the chair.

Notice the stuffed duck on the chair.

“Ben,” I asked, “did you do this?” He came to look. No, he had not left a stuffed duck on his chair. “She left you a present!” I said. Ordinarily, she only deposits things in places where she might use them for a pillow later – her bed, the couch, the recliner, the futon, the floor. She’s pretty flexible but I don’t think she would try to curl up in a plastic folding chair.

A distribution of toys.

A distribution of toys.

Meanwhile, she seemed pretty much the same.

"Who, me?"

“Who, me?”

It kind of reminded me of the scene in The Boggart by Susan Cooper where the Boggart leaves a peanut butter and jelly sandwich on Jessup’s chair as a present, but Jessup misinterprets the gesture and thinks his sister booby-trapped his chair. He should have known better; Emily would never do such a thing.

"It wasn't a literary allusion. I can't even read."

“It wasn’t a literary allusion. I can’t even read.”

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Filed under animals, unusual