Mudcat Café message #3065950 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #134670   Message #3065950
Posted By: Stilly River Sage
02-Jan-11 - 10:19 PM
Thread Name: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011

If spring is taking too long to get here, then you can take measures into your own hands to find something that will make late winter rich and interesting. Do you have a nursery in your area that would have Japenese flowering quince or forsythia? If you pot one of those and bring it indoors, you can probably get it to bloom before it would outdoors. For me, the surprise of finding the backyard quince (I planted it in 2002) in bloom tells me that spring is almost here. The forsythia was another of my northern seasonal markers, but I know they grow in these southern areas also, at least as an introduced shrub. And I suppose if you're really desperate for an early spring, you could go dig up some skunk cabbage and bring it inside. (At least, they were probably the first in the Pacific Northwest, and I get the impression from the landscape that you probably have something in the jack-in-the-pulpit family in your area swamps and wet areas beside roads, etc.)

You're in the realm of important ceremonies that represent what it is that is important to you both. Sometimes just a whiff is all you need.

I flew to Seattle to see my mother the last time when she was in Virginia Mason hospital, being treated for metastasized breast cancer. I walked over to the Pike Street Market to pick up a gift, something tactile she would enjoy holding, and as the clerk wrapped a piece of carved soapstone, she told me that the Copper River salmon were in. I mentioned this to Mom later, and she asked if I happened to have some for a meal anytime soon, would I bring her a bite?

I was spending the nights with friends, and in the morning I called the restaurant down at the yacht basin and asked if they had Copper River salmon, and could fix a lunch for me to take to her in the hospital. They were very nice and said of course. She was barely eating anything at that time, mostly on IVs, but I took that straight to her and she ate a couple of bites of salmon and she loved it. She wasn't eating much then, and my brother finished the rest - might as well not waste it! Nothing else appealed to her in the 2 more weeks she lived, nothing else food-wise was remarked on. But I am so glad that I was able to bring her something she really treasured for an important meal. If the fish hadn't been running, I'd have found a way to get some frozen, but I'd have gotten it. So do what you can to bend nature to your will and turn up with one of those surefire signs of spring, and I think you'll accomplish what you are hoping for. Take care of yourself during this time, let yourself enjoy those flowers also.