Friday, May 15, 2015

The Glass is Always Half Full

Kerry, the heroine of my new novel, The Hopeful Romantic, and I have something in common: we believe that things will always turn out okay.

Sunny optimism is almost a requirement for gardeners (what do you know, Kerry gardens too!). How else can you stick seeds in the ground every spring, and trust that plants will sprout and grow from those seeds and eventually feed you? Living on Berryridge Farm, surrounded by a forest in the middle of the Foothills, takes an even more optimistic spirit. John and I grow plants that we trust will survive, despite the constant onslaught of critters determined to steal, gobble up, or otherwise demolish them: deer, rabbits, birds, mice, voles, slugs and our tiny "friends" the aphids and cabbage worms.

Fencing, nets, raised and screened beds, and row cover only goes so far--so we're always glad when a new predator shows up. (Except for mountain lions.) Last week, John saw an animal we'd never before encountered, some kind of skinny rodent with a bushy tail. He of course Googled it, and discovered it's a kind of weasel. Normally, the thought of any more rodents on our place will put me in a tailspin, but apparently, these weasels eat voles. So it's all good!

Anyway, as I dive into another planting season, looking at the bright side gets me through. I'm just sure that this year, my tomato plants won't get blight, that the robins won't sneak inside the nets and devour our blueberries. or slugs won't mow down my new rows of teensy spinach seedlings. I'm heading outside now, but not before I put on my rose-colored glasses!

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