Oh, yes, the season to dig in the dirt and plant something

Early spring brings unbearable urge to get out there and the get the garden season under way

A month ago, I had an attack of a chronic disease that I have identified as “seed catalog disorder.” It comes at that point in mid-winter when snow and cold reach unbearable levels and the only reasonable thing to do is to think about spring.

Thinking about spring automatically leads to thinking about what to plant where and what seeds need to be started early so they can be transplanted and that leads to a full-blown case of what I call “dig in the dirt and plant something syndrome.”

I’m pretty sure that the majority of victims of this syndrome grew up on farms and find themselves trapped in urban environments. That view has been reinforced this year by my sister’s decision to move to Wichita to be closer to me and grandkids. I have a herd (8 if you count the ones in town; a dozen if you count the far-flung) and she has zero.

So, we evaluated this situation and decided that we should do what sisters should do – share. But in addition to sharing the fun of grandkids, we’ve found ourselves sharing a host of other interests, which include growing things.

Both of us love houseplants. I don’t remember that growing up on the farm where garden plants and field plants and flower beds ruled, but I do know that all those pots in windows became more and more important the further removed I became from the fields where I grew up. Apparently, she had the same experience.

But the arrival of warm weather and budding trees and greening grass and growing wheat kicks this whole syndrome up a notch. You HAVE to plant something OUTDOORS and wait for it to come up. There is huge satisfaction is seeing the shoots of fall bulbs pop up. There is joy in anything budding. But there is a total requirement that something must be PLANTED.

This week in Kansas, the recent snow melted, the temperature hit 43 degrees and the forecast says “sunny” with highs in the 50s and 60s for the next 10 days. That is the total prescription for dig in the dirt syndrome. I have gardening tools located and lubricated.

As for my sister, she told me today that she has already planted several seeds in “those cardboard egg cartons that I’ve been saving for a long time” and anticipates transplanting them to a garden in a month.

And now, I have to catch up.

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