Her name was Rosita.
She came sweeping onto the farm like a breeze. Welcome, beautiful and unexpected.
Rosita wasn't the name I expected for this flower, but it's all-too-perfect now that I know it. I can refer to each wild hot-pink star as a friend. "Jeez, Rosita's everywhere today!" and "You know, Rosita is looking especially fine in this light, but she's so gorgeous I can't do her justice with my iphone."
Being a bit of a gush for anything magical, I can easily envision each petal of Rosita springing from the footsteps of fairies as they dance through our fields, dotting the grasses and muddy swells with delicate pink sprays. Some sort of mythical fairy campaign to impart hope and beauty to our beleaguered land . Alex thinks that's probably not how the flowers got here.
But in my mind, the appearance of these pink flowers--which we have seen before, just never in these prolific numbers--is a sign. Yes, it means that Centaurium calycosum is a Southwestern annual that thrives in abnormally wet conditions, but she's also testament to the basic tenet we've based our career choices on. The efforts of now yield results in the future. The constant rain we've received over the past many months--the efforts of Nature--have yielded colorful results to be seen everywhere you look. Everything is tied to one another, whether we wanted it so or not, whether or not we planned for it.
And so I'll take Rosita as a sidecar bonus to the rain. She makes it easier to deal with mud.
And lest you think that hot pink and mud brown are the only colors on the farm, feast your eyes on the other remarkable native flowers stretching their petals across our coastal prairie...
Fairly soon, we'll add a new, feather-ier batch of color to the farm as well. The chickens of Casita de Pollitos are growing up, swiftly becoming more and more chicken than chick--which translates to they stink more and are generally less cute.
I still adore them, rest assured. But scooping one up for a cuddle takes considerable more skill than it used to. It's an absolute thrill to toss the shovelfuls of compost and watch them develop their hunting and scratching skills, slurping up worms and pecking and gouging the life out of grubs and chard stubs. McFarmer and I can't wait to turn them loose in our fields, particularly post-summer, when the fields are teeming with bugs that need gouging. Our little dinosaurs.
We've received several days of bright and clear sunshine lately, which has felt like nothing short of watching Perspephone herself spring from the ground bearing cake and champagne. However, more heavy rain is in our near forecast, so we've been busy hustling to make the most of these sweet rays.
Our Summer One planting of okra is in, nearly all beds are weeded, and the orchard is looking strong. We're looking forward to what is likely to be (hopefully to be) our first substantial harvest of the blackberries we planted our first winter here. And in only a few short months, pears will be here. We've been huddled together most nights, planning ahead for the hot, juicy months to come and planning even further ahead to how we'll adapt for next year's challenges, wet or not. Spring is as busy as ever, nevermind if the fields are soggy. :)