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Winters End

Jim Boxberger - Correspondent
Posted 2/26/21

So, I am sure by now everyone is a little tired of all the snow outside. Day after day, week after week, more snow in the forecast. But there is good news on the horizon.

The days are getting …

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Winters End

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So, I am sure by now everyone is a little tired of all the snow outside. Day after day, week after week, more snow in the forecast. But there is good news on the horizon.

The days are getting longer and once we get through our annual bag sale this weekend, the calendar will be turning to March and we will start planting in the greenhouse for spring. Perennials, fruit trees and berry bushes will be delivered soon and all will need to be planted right away.

We buy many of our smaller plants bare-root so that we can control the planting process and pay less in freight as we are not paying for dirt to be transported. Paying less for freight is one benefit but the other is the dirt. No one thinks about where their plants come from and what they are planted in, but the dirt is important.

When you plant something the roots need to adjust to our local soil as quickly as possible to get a good root base before winter. So plants that are planted in soil that is a match for our local soil have an advantage over plants that were potted up in Tennessee, Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

None of those places have soil even remotely close to Sullivan County, so that is why we will spend weeks potting plants up in our greenhouse instead of just buying them from out-of-state growers. Even on cold twenty or thirty something days, it is nice and warm in the greenhouse.

The heat usually only kicks on at night or cloudy days, otherwise the sun keeps it warm and toasty. Sunlight is a great source of vitamin D and, if you need a boost, stop in and visit me in the greenhouse for awhile. If you have the need to get your hands dirty, you can pot up a few perennials and learn what secrets we use to grow some of our beautiful spring flowers.

Maybe you just need some planting advice, either way, the greenhouse is where I will be for probably the next six weeks. It will give me some time to work on my tan before the April showers bring on all the May flowers.

But before that, it is almost the time of year to start tapping those maple trees. If you want to learn more about making maple syrup the Cornell Co-operative Extension can be a great resource and, of course, you can find plenty of videos on Youtube.

We carry taps and buckets for maple syrup for beginners and small scale producers, but if you need large scale supplies, maple producers in the area like the Justus Asthalter Sugarhouse on Aden Road between Liberty and Parksville sells equipment as well.

Just think about how much sugar could be just hanging around your backyard just waiting to be tapped this year. Pun intended.

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