Busy Season Is Upon Us!

Strawberries ready for planting.

Above my head I hear the sound of happy buzzing bees. They are playing in my blooming wisteria. We have an area outside I call, The Flower Grotto. It can be found in The Humming Bird Herb Garden, just out behind the house. From here I can watch happy goats bouncing around playing on the hill. I can hear the chickens cackling away in their coop, and I can keep an eye on the dog as she roams about the yard. It is the season when lilacs and wisteria sit as co regents here at the farm. From this spot I smell both. The lilac from a few feet to the side and behind me, the wisteria above me. They mingle with the fragrance of the fresh young herbs I just put in the gloriously rich, dark soil in my raised beds. I get to greet the lemon balm and sage that have returned as old friends, and put in many new green friends for myself. A humming bird just landed on the humming bird feeder, and a squirrel is busy robbing the seed feeder we also set up most years for the lady of the forest’s hungry birds. A few drops of spring drizzle fall. I hear them bouncing off the brick grotto floor. It sounds like fairies dancing in a ball room, the droplets landing on the brick. It makes a light music for me to write by. There are no words in the English language powerful enough to describe the perfect beauty of this moment, housed in flowers, and lit citronella torches, looking out at my tiny piece of well loved land.

This time of year brings with it an endless supply of beauty beyond beauty. It also carries with it the need for intensive labor. This is my busy season. I try to keep up the house and the guest rooms, while managing goats chickens, the herb garden, and a vegetable patch that is a bit on the large side by most standards. I plant, I clean, I manage animals, and in addition, I am constantly creating the things I need for self care, cleaning, and for whatever else I might need.

herbally medicated lip balm.

Recently, in the middle of everything my lips dried out, so I made herbally medicated lip balm. It is great stuff. I am thrilled with how it came out. I have even given some away to family and friends who swear up and down they have never had better. And as much as I enjoy being a mad scientist in my kitchen, I adore putting living things in the ground.

Peas headed for the vegetable patch.

A large percentage of the vegie garden is planted now and the herb garden is pretty well done. I spend time every day walking the dogs down past my little collection of fruit trees which have been flowering, down along the little private road that leads past the fruit trees and all the way to the town road.

It is a very busy time this year and with Dr. Farmer Moomin, working full time plus, it means I am largely on my own. But being largely alone so near to the forest surrounding us doesn’t frighten me. If anything I find it intriguing to imagine what secrets it holds… Note to self, get a metal detector for your birthday! The forest holds many secrets of the past. Old farm equipment, old stone walls… There is even an old apple tree. I have noticed too some berries that seem to still be planted in a row while I was clearing some land a couple of weeks back, at the edge of the woods. At one time, this entire region of central MA was called Lancaster. And back then, there was tension with the Natives Americans in the area for righteous reasons. (colonialism is evil.)  To make a long story short, they set Lancaster on fire. Burned most of it to the ground in a raid that was terribly deadly to both natives and settlers alike and produced the first story of a person being kidnapped by natives and made to live amongst them. I can’t help but wonder if one of the secrets of the forest, is what may have been here and may have burned long ago in that horrible and violent event.

Lettuce to be planted.

The Flower Grotto, where dreams are born and sent sailing up through the clouds and around the stars of the night sky. As we make dinner out here on the grill, under the twinkle lights that edge the ceiling of the grotto…. A place of inspiration where many an idea for a book has been birthed, and many a poem written, and countless day dreams explored to the fullest. While I wait for the roses to bloom, and work very busily at providing a simple more natural and environmentally friendly life for myself.

Thank you so much for keeping me company out here today, in the flower grotto.
And thank you for reading.
Amanda Of Wildflower Farm

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