My enabling brother-in-law is up to his tricks again. The call came today that he had bought me a flat of various tomatoes and sweet bell peppers. Mr. Farmer went and picked them up, assuming that we would keep them inside for a few weeks before planting them, just to make sure the weather would be warm enough. There are medium and large tomatoes and sweet cherry tomatoes. There are green bell peppers and yellow sweet peppers. All the plants are at least 10 inches tall, and most of them have flowers on them already!
The size and progress of these plants completely throws off my gardening schedule. My nice, leisurely plan for May was to complete the herb garden, then plant the annuals, then prepare and plant the veggie garden - all over the next 3-4 weeks. Instead, faced with a week of rain nearly every day, I must prepare the vegetable bed immediately. These plants are tall and straight and healthy, but they are surely root bound and need room to set down good roots soon if there is any hope of them ever holding their own weight.
The vegetable garden needs a lot of work. It is too shallow. The wall needs another course of stone. The soil is compacted and depleted from last year's tomatoes. There are small toys and cigarette butts under the layer of dry, fallen leaves. It is so large that I will probably need to add 4 wheelbarrow loads of manure-soil to fill it up. It is going to take some time.
So, on the first of May, after already completing the hosta garden and planting the new Greek oregano, I started jumping on the shovel and turning up the vegetable garden. Let's just hope my exhaustion turns to delight by the end of the season.