Spring vs. Winter
Spring is battling with winter for control as March 2023 finishes up. The temperatures remain winter-like with upper teens and lower twenties (Fahrenheit) still occurring weekly if not daily. But the winds have kicked in, a sure sign of changing seasons here on the High Plains. Long range forecast calls for average to below average temperatures for the month of April. So, spring planting is on hold.
However, much yard work occurs whenever there is a break in the tropical storm gusts and the day sees temperatures over 45 F°. Two new manifolds are ready for action. The first is a replacement for the old pipe in the Big Garden. The second will irrigate the asparagus bed, rose bed and cut flower bed.
Yesterday, the first of the asparagus spears were spotted poking out of the ground. Since the next several nights will bring temperatures in the teens, new straw was scattered across the bed. Often the temperature swings 50 degrees from high to low creating confusion for plants and animals alike.
Many days in March 2023 (including this last one) were too nasty to stay outside for any length of time. So, many hours were spent in the basement working on quilts. The youngest grandchild received his completed quilt when he traveled to the Plains one weekend. The small pink bargello is next up for quilting and a king size bargello quilt in greens and blues is all cut out and ready to be pieced.
An I Spy quilt is also on the docket for April. The base of the quilt is in the UFO stash and wording for the I Spy clues is almost complete. I hope to stay on track for my goal of completing the unfinished pieces stored in the quilt room.
March 2023 Seed Starting
Due to the wacky weather nothing has been transplanted into the garden. But multiple trays are ready to go. The greens can withstand temperatures in the mid-twenties. However, the forecast still shows drops into the teens. Patience is needed.
Tomatoes joined the seed starts. They have a long way to go before transplant size. As long as the temperatures stay cool the plants can take their time. I am way behind on the seed planting but the natural indicators of time support the delay. The first crocuses did not appear until the Ides of March. Some years the harbingers of spring pop up at the end of January. Paying attention to nature and noting the emergence from dormancy aids in knowing when to plant what.
March 2023 In the Library
Since the weather was conducive to mostly staying indoors, many books were read in March 2023. A series by Christian fiction writer Terri Blackstock took up several nights as did quite a few gardening books. The action-adventure books Code 6 and Burner as well as the non-fiction Adrift: America in 100 Charts were all reviewed on the blog.
All the books read in the month were library check-outs. I am fortunate to have such a wonderful library in a town with fewer than ten thousand people. The staff is incredible, and the programs are many and varied. Truly something for everyone!
Looking Beyond Local
Several key events took place at the national level during the month. Banks focusing on the tech industry took a beating. Silicon Valley Bank depositors had a lifeline thrown to them. All deposits became insured by the FDIC. This may become a moral hazard. Time will tell.
In other financial news, talk about Central Bank Digital Currencies increased during the month. I am very leery of CBDCs. There are too many cyber attacks across many industries. I think a system of CBDCs would be ripe for fraud. For a good overview of the issue click here to connect to information from Think Tank Atlantic Council.
Finally, the end of March 2023 brought the first ever indictment of a former United States President. Many are comparing the action to the tax evasion charges that brought down Al Capone. We indeed are living in interesting times.