Here at the tail end of February, both the garden and I are a bit tattered and worn—the garden because it has suffered the usual slings and arrows of dormancy, and me because I’ve had the flu for two weeks. No matter, for the good news is that spring is just around the bend and the garden and I shall see the end to our down time.
I was feeling well enough to sit in the garden yesterday afternoon. The morning had started cool and damp, but by midday, the sun was out and a light wind had dried things out. I sat next to the hoop house, where I’d recently sown seeds for lettuce and carrots. Next to that was a trellis for snow peas. The lettuce and carrots are up, and showing their first true leaves, but there is still no sign of the peas, which were planted six days ago. The seed packet says 5-10 days for germination, so I’m still well within that window; even so, this is when the doubts begin.
Did I plant them too deep? Not deep enough? Did the fact that I’d pre-soaked them for two days instead of one ruin my chances? Where are they? Why can’t I see them?
But I’ve been doing this for enough years now that here is what I know to be true: Every year I plant seeds. Every year I doubt they will come up. Most years they do.
That’s the way it goes in a garden. I sometimes doubt in spring, too, since if you were to go by what is growing right now, there is little to suggest its return. Like the snow peas, spring is hidden beneath the surface of all that is dormant. There is no reason to doubt it.