The Thing about Spring


Spring bursts forth!

It’s Spring here in our little patch of the world. If I were asked the question, “What’s your favorite season?” Spring would be my answer.

I can quickly list all the things I love about this time of year:

      warmer, more comfortable temperatures, longer daylight hours, beautiful flowers, green grass, new leaves, calves, chicks, and kittens being born, fresh air blowing through open windows, spring frogs peeping, waking to birds singing…

The list of tangible joys found in Spring goes on and on for me. This is my New Year Eve celebration, put on your hats and blow the party horns, “Spring is here!” This is the time that my resolutions are put forth:

Get the garden planted early, keep it weed free, and waste none of what is harvested, make a BIGGER dent in the unfinished home addition project, keep the yard and fence lines mowed and trimmed, keep flower beds weeded, scrub and organize every room in the house, clean out the barns,…again the list goes on and on

And in the middle of all these joys and resolutions, I find myself distracted and conflicted. My distraction comes, of course, from this long list. I am ready and joyfully willing to take on all of these tasks, but when I begin working at one job, my mind is filled with thoughts of the other things on the list. While planting in the garden, I imagine all the things I could be doing in the barn and while in the barn, I think about scrubbing walls in the house. All of these distracted thoughts lead to feelings of frustration and suddenly the joy this season holds is in question.

One job of Spring that I am busy at this week is onion planting. This will be the 11th year we have planted Candy onions. In the first year we grew and sold 15,000 onions commercially for the Pennsylvania Simply Sweet onion program. Since that first year, we have scaled the crop down to under 5000 onions and have aquired our own customer base that looks forward to the onion harvest in August.

The onions are planted in raised, covered and irrigated rows.


Onion rows ready for planting

Once the rows are put down, I rake the dirt between and at the edges to make it smooth, then spread rye grass seed over the area with a hand held seeder. After seeding the grass, I use a broom to sweep any grass seed off the black plastic. After these steps are completed the planting can begin.


Onions ready for planting

The planting holes are poked with a Dear Husband made invention-a broom handle cut into even pieces, sharpened and inserted through holes cut in the board. I can poke 8 holes at a time.


The onions are then planted one at a time into each hole. After each is planted they are given a small amount of water to make sure the roots get settled into some damp soil.


Planted onions

Planting these onions requires a hefty payment of precious Spring hours. But it is one of those jobs on the list that I am not yet willing to give up. When I weigh the positives and the negatives or maybe better thought of as the joys and challenges, the joys still outweigh the challenges. I(and Dear Husband) still love the view of a newly laid planting bed, the sight of onion leaves multiplying, the bulbs beginning to swell and finally the moment of harvest when these softball sized onions are pulled from under the plastic.

I’m not sure how to stop this Spring roller coaster ride, holding on and going faster is starting to make me nauseous. Maybe for now I’ll take some Dramamine, buckle up, throw my hands over my head and hope I come into the station with a few things checked off my list. I may yell a little through the scary parts, but how can I pass up the ride?


3 thoughts on “The Thing about Spring

  1. I love these photos! You have been hard at work. My spring, so far, as consisted of bringing some lighter weight clothes upstairs from storage 🙂 lol I am loving this weather! I hope you save me a big bag of onions later this season. Your’s are the best tastin’ onions ever!


  2. I love seeing the pictures of your farm. They’re beautiful and remind me of all the wonderful things I miss in Pennsylvania. I love spring! Hope you accomplish a little of the list 😉


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