Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Digging Out

Yesterday was such a gorgeous day. I put my plants on the back step for some sunshine and noticed that the garden has been melting out pretty well.

The circle garden right outside that door was half melted out. It does still have a foot of snow on some of the spinach plants, but only because that is where I shoveled all the snow off the path to the compost. But where it is melted out I see green leaves that look pretty happy. Snow is such a great insulator. It might have been cold, but the snow kept my plants alive.

One part that wasn't melting out very quickly was where the snow was shoveled near the fence. The fence shades the ground during the heat of the afternoon, so it takes longer than the first part of the bed. So I decided to shovel it out to make the process go faster. I had shoveled a bit last week, but did the rest of it yesterday.

The after photo shows that I couldn't get it all off as the bottom was ice frozen to solid soil. But I got the worst of the top part off. It ought to melt out a lot faster now. Supposedly it is supposed to get into the 60s on Friday. I hope it does.

Ice dams have been a real problem this year, but I never thought I'd see one in the garden. The end of each path has a big ice dam. So I'm getting huge puddles in my paths. I tried to chop out some of the ice, but it is really solid. Hopefully in the next few days it will melt out a bit on its own.

You can see by the snow cover which parts get the most sun in the garden. That far corner is much more shaded than the rest of the garden. Still I wanted to get Bed 7 shoveled out a bit. I'm thinking of doing some early spinach in there. It needs to get out before the end of May so I need to get it in early enough to produce. I shoveled the paths surrounding it and the top bits that would come off. Like the other beds I shoveled, the top most layer of ice is pretty stuck on top.

The snow got shoveled out near the foundation of the house and onto the path. That part is warm and it was almost all melted by evening.

I also shoveled some back onto the driveway. There really isn't a lot of space to put the snow, but it was enough for now. I've got two of my spinach beds, the broccoli bed, and the cabbage bed shoveled out. I'll be looking at my garden plan and see if I need to shovel out any other area. I probably need to work on the onion bed and the Chinese cabbage bed. Then hope for lots of sun to warm the soil. Hmm I wonder if I have some black plastic somewhere in the basement. That would speed things up a bit.


  1. It is so interesting to read about how you handle snow. I can't imagine growing things in such a climate. But I guess it shows you how to read the garden spaces. Cheers for the insight into another world.

  2. I shoveled out the paths in the raised bed areas last week. And I know what you mean about the ice - who knew that ice could be that impossible to break up - I tried to hammer it away from the base of the shed door but it was just so rock solid that I barely made a dent. Thankfully, that little bit was enough to get it going during those few hours when it did go above freezing and I was eventually able to break it all up & get into my shed.

    Sounds like that wonderful 60's weather will be hitting you the day after us - so looking forward to it!

  3. I can see your compost piles, that's a good thing. My bin in actually free of snow, even though it is behind the shed in the woods. The morning sun gets to it and has freed it of snow. I haven't visited the garden yet (getting to it probably requires a hike because the access road is plowed in by the trucks clearing the parking lot. Shoveling the snow off the beds sounds like a good idea (except for the beds where the garlic is planted). Hang in there, spring is coming.

  4. I didn't realize that you had soo much snow and here I was feeling sorry for myself! Beautiful day here and almost too warm in the afternoon to work outdoors. Hope we don't go from cold to really hot. Nancy

  5. There is light at the end of the tunnel for you at last! We are lucky over here - if we get snow it normally only lasts a week or two at most and soon thaws.

  6. Its exciting to finally see the soil, isn't it?

  7. I bet you are really glad to see soil again instead of white snow. I hope the temperature rises as promised and soon all the white stuff will be gone.

  8. We are also supposed to have a couple of warm days. Great idea to remove as much snow as you can now ... the sun will hit the ice and you'll be ready to go in no time!