|the construction begins for the new fence and stone path|
It was an absolutely beautiful time to be outdoors today. With temps nearing 60 degrees, and the sun shining brightly, we broke ground today on our plans to outwit the groundhog who feasted upon our vegetable garden last summer (see my blog post from Aug. 2012). Reducing our harvest to next to nothing by the end of last year's growing season, it was a formidable foe, and we vowed to have a plan this Spring.
So we began the first step - digging out the sod around our existing raised beds. Bill and I worked on it for about three hours; backbreaking work for someone who's been somewhat sedentary this winter (that would be me). I'll probably pay for this tomorrow with sore muscles and the like. Or maybe not; come to think of it, I'm going to count all that snow-shoveling we did in February as preparation for this big dig. Anyway, we're almost done with the excavation. It doesn't look like much, but trust me - it was more wheelbarrow loads to the compost pile than I care to count.
Next will come the fence; nothing too elaborate - metal posts and chicken wire (with the wire extending out away from the fence underground to discourage any digging). Then leveling sand and finally a top layer of crushed stone to make it all "pretty." Like a page right out of Martha Stewart's playbook.
Exhausted from our progress so far, we put away our tools for the day and went inside. After a shower, we too were all pretty again, and we settled into the rest of the day's duties. But I couldn't resist one more peek out the window to admire our handiwork; the ground now dotted with robins, sparrows and other assorted birds hungrily gobbling up the insects we overturned.
Wait a minute - what's that over there by the bushes? That big round ball of fur that actually looks a lot like Jasper (one of our cats). Couldn't be him, because he's an indoor cat.
DAMN! It's none other than our friendly local groundhog, obviously out to admire our work as well, with visions of swiss chard, baby kale, and yummy collard greens dancing in his/her little head. And it was certainly not the emaciated creature I pictured first emerging from it's cave, after spending many months hibernating. Nope - it's as plump as ever (maybe even more so than last summer)? WTF??? OK, I don't want to even consider that it might be a pregnant groundhog (please, please, please, please Nooooooo).
Oh well - take a deep breath; it is the reason we're building this fence, after all . . . but somehow I have a sinking feeling it's not going to be that simple. Stay tuned, as this saga is just beginning.
Oh, Lovely Spring!!!!!