Gardening · Homesteading

Cool Spring Still Leads To Growth

It’s been awfully dreary this June in the PNW. But that is OK. It’s not 2007 again, and summer will come again on the 20th of this month. In 2007 we called it the No-Summer, and it was so cold early on. June this year, so far, has been primarily wet and on the chilly side (think in the 50’s, some cracking into the low 60’s).

I did plant a lot in May but stuck to the end of the month and was still planting into June. One of the bigger issues was waiting for a reprieve in the rain, which is ironic considering Washington, Idaho, and Montana are in a drought this year. We live in the Olympic Mountain Rainshadow, yet June has rained—a lot. I have only had to turn one of the irrigation systems on so far, and the only real watering I am doing is items in pots.

And that is weather, and we just roll with it. I sit here, looking outside. It is grey and overcast, and I’d swear it wants to rain. But supposedly it will burn off and cross in the 60’s today and warm up a tiny bit, and possibly get actually warm this week. That will pop our crops. But then as we enter summer, the cool weather will return.

I am not complaining, though. It encourages me to be outside enjoying it and getting work done.

While the crops might not all like it (though the Asparagus and lettuce do!), the flowers are loving it, especially the native plants.

Nootka Roses? They thrive in the cool weather. The living fence is bigger than ever before.

My variegated elderberry tree. It’s hit at least 12 feet tall this year and was covered in flowers.

Feral Chamomile Flowers. Popping up all over the gardens.

Elderberry in bloom.

Native strawberries produce many berries for birds and squirrels.

Lupine flowering. These were a good 2 feet long. This is their second year, grown from seed last spring.

Nootka Rose up close.

Twinberry is a native plant that I encourage in my berry garden. It showed up on its own, I carved out space for it to grow.

We let a field grow wild this spring, with daisies filling it.

Is Foxglove invasive here? Yes, but the native bees love it. It’s gone crazy this spring, ranging from white, light pink, hot pink, and purple. We pull it when it seeds and burn it later.

Even the fungi are working overtime. Small Turkey Tail in action, eating a long dead Alder stump.

More roses. Because wow, this year has been fantastic for them. They are surging.

Native Red Huckleberry is doing fine and is ripening this week. They were delicious this year, having sampled them the other day.

Native Salmonberry, the first are ripe. It’s an acquired taste but one we love.

Native Thimbleberry flwoering. Best nature toilet paper if you ever need it. Softest leaves.

Nature is doing her thing this spring. For native plants, this is a great year. The deer are back for the season on our land with a new buck and a couple of lady deer. No babies have been seen yet this year. As for the gardens full of crops, they will eventually get there. That’s my motto to live by. The coming sun will help them surge. We have 16 hours of daylight which makes up for a lot.