This serious snowfall has really made me think about year-round provisioning of food from our yard. Information from growing zones a few warmer than ours feels irrelevant, a ‘year-round-harvest’ unattainable. My body aches from shoveling. The additional snow will likely make for later than normal access to soil for planting. Roads were impassible. Doom.
But the mountains of snow too, will pass. We’re still eating garden veg from the cellar, and I’m still firm in my resolve to attach the two ends of the season – the end of the root cellar veg blending into the arrival of spring greens. It’s going to mean cold frames, and getting our usual mid-May greens pushed into mid-April. Once achieved, we will be eating fresh [uncanned, unfrozen, undried] food from our yard year-round, despite the inevitable -30 temperatures and 3 feet of snow. Enormous piles of snow will not prevent cold frame construction – it can be shoveled – and early seeding should proceed as planned. The cold and snow is irrelevant to the stash of garden produce in our root cellar.
2011 will be an adventurous gardening season here as we near the maximum amount of area planted in gardens – the vast majority of lawn having met its fate. A lot of beds that were in transition under sheet mulch or green manure in 2010 will now be ready to produce food. The seedling flats start over the next few weeks. In a couple months, I’ll have my hands in the first of the exposed soil against heat-reflecting walls. The days get too long, the sun too strong. This snow certainly won this battle, but it will most certainly lose the war.