Valley Gardening: Picking but not yet planting

Okay….it always helps to push the ‘SEND’ button to get your email on its way. To all of you who worried that I might have died…no, I’m alive and still chasing the dream! The following is what I wrote last week with some revisions.

All’s good in the neighborhood! Between me and the neighbors on the corners of Eighth and State, all of our drains were opened up using huge, heavy pry bars and picks! Why did we do this? Well, we wanted our neighbors and for me, customers, to be safe. Not sure where LODA lands in the priority of streets in Alamosa, so we have gotten used to just getting it done. We think picking ice is an exercise program.  Good cardio workout!

I am NOT saying the guys out on the plows and dump trucks haven’t worked hard! I AM wondering what the snow removal budget was 5-8 years ago, and what it is today. If it has been reduced, where has that money gone? Was the money ‘stockpiled’ or was it spent? I just know how much ice we all chipped in our neighborhood--A LOT! And I have pictures to prove it.

I also wonder about ordinances the city is working up that will make it illegal for citizens to dump snow on the streets/city right of ways. Where in the heck are we supposed to put it? Wouldn’t it be great if the powers that be showed us the areas by our driveways etc. that we needed to dump. Maybe it will be another ordinance that won’t be enforced—such as shoveling sidewalks, and riding bikes on sidewalks.  When I have heard remarks about un-shoveled sidewalks, the answer has been “give us the address and we will look into it.” Why do citizens have to do the reporting?

At the risk of being blasted /ostracized (what else is new), I am trying to wrap my little brain around the idea of a Veterans Memorial being planned for south of town at the Alamosa County Complex, a/k/a People’s Place—to the tune of $505,000! Kind of mind boggling to me! I believe, I know… that I am as patriotic as anybody…. practically grew up in the VFW in Luverne, Minnesota…oh, the memories. I cannot fathom a memorial of this size for our community. I certainly need to be convinced. In the meantime I guess I will continue raising $1,500 for flags and poles to put in Veteran’s Park—down by Papers of Distinction. Guess I better work on getting permission…before I am shut down in my tracks!   (I know that grants will be applied for on this memorial—but those grants aren’t free money…they come from somewhere). Just my humble opinion. I repeat…I am VERY patriotic.

In my defense, I have had a number of veterans in the store the past couple of weeks. I have tried to be informed on this memorial. I have not found a vet in favor—I must hang around a different kind of crowd—those preferring services while they are alive, vs. a memorial after they are dead.

The pile at the south end of the Safeway parking lot is SLOWLY, but surely melting! We have about 150 bets on its demise! My guess is you still have 2-6 weeks to make your bet count. The really neat thing is how folks are making their guesses, and then donating extra…for the cause! I have great customers, that’s for sure!

Can you tell that I need to get some dirt under my nails this weekend? I hope to clean up plants, transplant some, check for bugs on others, etc. Plants just seem to know that the days are getting a little bit longer, even if some of these past nights have been pretty brutal. I have actually been showering a bunch of my plants—both at home, and here at the store. I can almost feel the plants breathing again after getting the coating of dust removed (we heat with wood and that doesn’t help). Work on plants, Ruthie, and just breathe, breathe! Soon, but not yet, it will be time to plant your tomato seedlings. 

Before I forget…I know that you can buy your seeds from all kind of seed catalogs. But, I am happy to let you know that we will be working with three small, independent, mom and pop seed companies this year. People who really know what grows in the Valley. People who care. It does make a difference.