Solar Tracking

Solar Tracking
How low can you go? Snow and ice and cancelled school.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Spring Equinox


       
    The Spring Equinox passed last week and the world is clearly tumbling towards the sun.  All of the Winter Greens at Sunbow are sprouting flowers and huge, lush leaves. Buds are swelling. Daffodils and Grape Hyacinth are blooming. In the woods, we find trillium, Indian plum, yellow violets, and spring queen. The fawn lily and shooting stars are up, but not yet blooming. Bleeding Heart is unfurling lacy leaves. All of the fruit trees are pink and white with blossom; the wild plum is already snowing down on the Berry Alley. The grass is growing madly—there are tufts and hummocks everywhere.

            The garden work has picked up drastically. We’re still on the twenty minutes a day mode, but it is happening every day. The spring cold frame is planted out with peas, kale, mustard, broccoli, and cauliflower. I’ve laid down seeds for lettuce and radishes in the corners. The hoop house is holding all of the alliums—leeks, scallions, and onions—and I’ll put in the root crops after the moon has crossed full, next weekend. Today, I started the greens for the summer bed: chard, collards, fennel bulbs, more broccoli and cauliflower.  The tray is sitting in the dining room next to the tomato starts. When I am not planting, I’m trimming grass or building the new trellis to surround the whole garden.

         
   When the sun is out, or the clouds are high and thin, rather than low and hailing, we are all outside. Both cats prowl the yard. Lucy perches on the roof of the Ark, tangled up in plum blossoms. Kayli sits on the neighbor’s roof, looking like a benevolent furry sun studying the back yard.  Mark has rediscovered the new chairs set in front of the dining room and reads in the warm light. We take long walks, pausing in the cleared open areas above town, staring out over the valley. Yes, there is still snow on Mary’s Peak and the Cascades, but the season has shifted.

            In two weeks, I’ll have bees in the hive and four new chicks in the house. One Sunday morning, we will plant five varieties of potatoes in two of the ten foot beds. We’ll move the chicken coop one more time before summer.  The light is coming and we are ready.


Greek Walnut Cake—straight from Moosewood Deserts

This is a great Springtime cake, with lots of possible variations. It works best in a nine inch spring-form pan, I think. And, most of the ingredients are local.

¾ cup ground walnuts
¼ cup butter, room temp.
½ cup of sugar
1 egg, preferably from the back yard
¾ cup of home made yogurt
grated peel of an orange and a lemon
½ t cinnamon
pinch of salt
1 cup white flour
1t BP
½ t BS

Beat sugar and butter together. Add egg, yogurt, peels, and mix. Add flour, BP, BS, and nuts.

350 oven for about 25 minutes.

While the cake bakes, juice the lemon and orange and warm the juices with half a cup of sugar. Pour the syrup over the warm cake.

This could also take whipped cream, or brandy, or chocolate….




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