Sunday, June 03, 2012

Rocky Mountain Gardening

What a difference a few feet of elevation can do to gardening.  Well, quite a few feet to be honest about it.

Ruth and I have just returned from a visit with our son Jeff’s family in Avon, Colorado, where Jeff, his wife Sandy and our three grandkids, Christian, Nick and Libby have a vegetable garden in their backyard. 

Before going further, some comparative information.  Our garden at Roshara is about 1,000 feet above sea level.  Jeff’s garden is about 7,500 feet.  And 6,500 feet of elevation makes all the difference.  I’ve been eating radishes for two weeks; Jeff’s radishes are just poking their heads above ground.  Our potatoes are nearly filling the rows; Jeff’s are not up.  Our peas are in pod stage and a week or so from picking.  Jeff’s are just coming up.

            Avon is having mid-spring weather: the daffodils are blooms, as are the tulips.  The lilacs are in full bloom and the thousands of acres of aspens on the mountainsides are absolu8tely splendid in their early spring many shades of green.

            On the plus side, with long days and lots of brilliant sunshine, Jeff’s garden will do well—it simply grows on a different time schedule than those of us in Wisconsin know.   Oh, just as here in the Midwest, more and residents in the mountains are growing some of their own food.  It’s the new wave of the future—really a return to a very old idea, but that’s another story.

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: When you grow your own food, you know its history—from seed to your dinner plate.

CHECK THIS OUT:  My one day workshop: “Writing From Your Life,” October 13, 8-4. The Clearing, Door County. For more information go to.


June 6, 10:30. College Week, UW-Madison Campus, Ames County Novels

June 13, 6:00 p.m.  Wisconsin Public TV Major Donors Meeting, Center For Discovery, UW-Madison Campus.  Early history of Agricultural Education in Wisconsin including farm stories.

June 15, 1-2:00 p.m. S.E. Wisconsin Book Festival, UW-Waukesha campus, Waukesha.

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