Jessica Walliser
April 1, 2010

The onion snow indicates when to plant the onions for Jessica
Photo by Jessica Walliser

Earlier this week we had our “onion snow.” 

Not sure if the whole world knows what “onion snow” is, but it’s what my mom calls the season’s last light dusting of snow (it might be a Pennsylvania Dutch thing, I don’t know). 

The name comes from the fact that the presence of said snow indicates that it’s time to head out to the garden and plant your onion sets.  So, with trowel and preschooler in tow, I did just that.

Together my four-year-old companion and I planted 60 onion sets, half-yellow and half-red.  He did pretty well remembering that the pointy end goes up and to space them a few inches apart from each other. 

It was the longest period of time he and I spent side-by-side in the garden actually “working” together. Forty-five minutes of maternal bliss for this garden mama.

After the onion sets were watered in with the little plastic elephant watering can, he wondered off to chase a chicken and I set to work erecting the first of our pea/bean tepees.  It looks pretty darned good if I can say so myself.  I

 planted Sugar Daddy snap peas around it and will fill the underneath with fresh straw to make a snug hide-out.  It felt really good to dig—extra good, as a matter of fact, after such a long, life-sucking winter. 

I promised we would plant carrots next and lettuce and broccoli, but it will have to wait until after the Easter holiday.  We’re heading East to visit my family.  We’ll get to spend some time in my mother’s garden while we’re there.  I know my son will love that.  Maybe his Nona will let him plant onions with her too. 

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