Thursday, February 09, 2006


Yesterday was the first day where it was warm enough to work outside in just a sweater. It was probably warm enough for other people to wear T-shirts, but I wear sweaters even in the Summer. There is something about the weight of a gives comfort, and protects against over-eager branches and thorns.

And even though it was warm, there was a bite to Wind who circled softly (for once!) around the house. Shady places still reminded me it was Winter.

But most of the tulips and daffodils I planted in the Fall are up, some close to blooming, especially on the South side of the house. We have had so much rain and wind in the last month. The yard is boggy, in places, and one of those places is where I planted a lot of crocus. I'll have to remember to move them in the Fall.

The plum tree is full of buds, almost ready to burst. Last night, though, we had a heavy frost. Many of the more tender plants were seduced into believing it was Spring, because for the last while we have had warm, rainy weather. Then they send up tender shoots; there were many of those yesterday that I saw as I wandered around the yard, checking for signs of growth.

The four varieties of Pussy Willow are all doing well, covered in those soft, rabbity grey buds. I will never forget the awe on my granddaughter's baby face, the first year I stroked her cheek with one of the buds. ( She has had a passion for soft, velvety materials ever since.) And nowadays, there are many trees that have very large, very colourful flowers. I have a weeping Pussy Willow that has these huge buds; they also turn bright yellow later in Spring, giving double value. These trees also don't mind having their feet wet, so I had no concern with them.

I cleaned under Grandfather Tree, listening to him give advice on where he wanted mulch to be placed. The chimes tinkled each time I did what I was told, making me smile. Awareness...the cornerstone of Shamanism, Shaman Maggie says. It absolutely delights me when I intuit the messages sent to me by these beings.

Chervil and the Red Lettuce patch planted in the late fall are waiting...they haven't yet put on any new growth. Parsley has seeded itself all over...the pretty, curly, vibrant green leaves make a wonderful ground cover for the early Spring flowers. And Parsley Pesto isn't far off, either, by the looks of things!

Snowdrops have almost finished blooming...but my guides tell me there will be snow, still...and it's not far off. Probably just after this high pressure system fades, and another storm blows in. I covered some of the most tender plants with leaf mulch, just in case.

Working in the garden after a long winter grounds and centres me like nothing else. I am totally in the present moment, totally focussed on what I'm doing. My attention is devoted to one thing at a time. Thoughts blow in and out of my consciousness...I can solve any problem by this type of meditation, where I don't analyze and poke things to death. By just letting the problems float in and out again... somehow, from somewhere, the answers come.

There is nothing so relaxing as an early Spring workout in the garden. It set me up to face the rest of Mother Nature's Winter.

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