Our feature photo this month is of one of the old rambling roses that grow on the north border of the farm. This rose of unknown variety and its companion were planted long ago by those who have not graced this Earth in many a year. The old wooden posts have rotted and fallen over, their rusty wires engulfed and held high in places by tall trees. Vinca that were planted along this zone have grown into a thick mat through which a few stray daffodils struggle to emerge in late winter, and an ancient lilac bush peers in the dining room window. The blooms are small now, but still fragrant. Their time has come and gone already this year, and I wonder what it once looked like, this wild borderland. Haven to birds, insects and small mammals, it will remain as is until the day finally comes when another family decides to leave their mark upon this land, and the border will be tamed once again. I nod to our neighbor on the north side. We are content with what is.
News from the farm
April’s warmer than normal weather was met with cooler, wetter weather in May. The vines seem to have recovered from the frost in late March, and we are looking forward to a good season. Tomatoes, eggplants, cucumbers and peppers, started in trays under lights in early March, are slowly making their way into the garden. I trust the weather a bit more these days, although Mother Nature can surprise one late in the season.
The new greenhouse has been populated with grape starts, miscellaneous cuttings and potting bench. I look forward to having the front porch back, although it has steadfastly served as a plant nursery for the last 3 years. Rick and I wouldn’t mind eating out on the porch during this season of azure blue sky days and cool nights without being hemmed in by stacks of plant pots and garden tools.
News from the Cats of Salmon Brook Farms
The Cats of Salmon Brook Farms are enjoying the late spring weather, and are too busy lazying about on various cushioned window sills to post a report this month. Our Northeast Regional Feline Correspondent Otis, who hails from the distant eastern lands of Connecticut, has agreed to fill in for the crew this month, and update readers on weather and events in his area. Otis first made an appearance with his companion the lovely Izzy back in our February 2016 post.
“It seems that after a very brief, but cold spring, Connecticut has been plunged into summer! The temperatures by the end of May ranged from high 80’s to low 90’s! Everything is suddenly green, which is a welcome contrast to the stark winter scenery. Thankfully, we did not have a lot of snow this year, but what we did had just made me miserable.
The snow blower has been removed from the tractor and replaced with the belly mower, which makes me very happy since I live in fear of being sucked up by the blower and spit into a snow pile somewhere along the driveway. The pasture has already been cut for the first time this year and the humans just put the first cutting of hay into the barn tonight. Peas, lettuce, swiss chard, kale, tomatoes, parsley, eggplant, basil, and leeks have been planted in the vegetable garden and the strawberries and blueberries are already flowering. I must admit that I love basking in the sun on the stone wall while my humans busy themselves with farm work.
The trees have just started to bloom starting with the beautiful magnolia tree and followed by the dogwood. Iris flowers began opening this week soon to be replaced by the peonies come early June. Izzy likes sitting on the stone wall behind the peony greens in hopes of capturing Mr. Shrew.
She has been very amenable to holding peace talks with him, but refuses to make any promises.
Thankfully, my mistress finally put cushions back on the porch furniture so that I can spend some quality nap time on my favorite wicker couch!! From my couch I can enjoy a feline view of my kingdom…when I am not snoozing that is!
Cheers for now…on to summer!! – Otis, Northeast Regional Feline Correspondent“
Thank you, Otis, for a splendid report!
Music News (schedule posted on the Performance Schedule page)
I am making some progress with health issues, although it has been a long, slow process of recovering from caregiving.
I am still on hiatus from performing, but continuing to play and enjoy down time with my guitars while I continue to recuperate. I learned how to make videos in late winter and do some rudimentary editing. Technology continues to make leaps and bounds, allowing the small-time geek, tinkerer, and putterer like myself another means of expressing and sharing creativity. Expect a surprise in months to come! I won’t promise when, though. I am savoring this time of few obligations to anyone except myself, the farm, and it inhabitants.
In the meantime, in your area, wherever you may be, please do all you can to help keep your own local music alive. Go out and see someone you don’t know, host a house concert, download songs or buy CDs. Or even just stop for a minute to hear someone at a Farmers’ Market. Live, local musicians provide a wealth of talent most people will never hear about in this age of iPods, Internet and TV.
Bookings and home-grown produce:
Lavinia and Rick Ross
Salmon Brook Records / Salmon Brook Farms
Thank you to all who have stopped by this site, offered their “likes”, comments and words of encouragement. You are a wonderful community.