While the rest of the country is covered in snow, it’s 75 degrees and sunny in my neck of the woods. Perfect weather for planting this year’s garden! In the back garden box, we planted a wide variety of vegetable seeds and berries with hope of a good harvest.

Planting a new garden is always an adventure as you never what might be hiding in the soil. Everything from worms, scorpion spiders (they sound scary but they eat scorpions, so I love them), and remnants from last year’s harvest can be found while tilling. We actually  have five plants from last year that survived the winter – 3 tomato plants came back from the dead, a strawberry plant started growing for no reason (we didn’t plant it there), and a green pepper plant. All have new blooms and are rather insistent on staying where they’re planted!

However, nothing could have prepared me for what I found while tilling the dirt in the space next to the miraculous green pepper plant. Our garden grows a lot of different things, but never did I expect to find a teeny tiny cactus poking up through the ground. We don’t have cacti anywhere in our yard, nor can they be found in the desert preserve across the road. I’ve only seen cactus growing about a block away in our neighborhood, so the seed had to have come from one of those houses. How it got in our garden box will forever remain a mystery (a bird or a stray cat maybe?).

It would have been easy enough to add this little cactus to the compost pile, but we decided to give him a chance. It just so happens we had a tiny planter leftover from my baby pine tree (he graduated to a bigger pot!), so we very carefully dug up the cactus and gave him a new place to grow.  The garden will soon be very wet, so a dry pot is his best chance for survival.

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Cactus baby!
Photo by: c.b.w. 2014

This little guy is only 1½” tall. I don’t have a lot of experience taking care of cacti, but after talking to my mother, (the Cacti Goddess), I learned a few things. What I’ve got is a Jumping Cholla. They grow really fast and like extremely dry ground.  After all we went through to save him, I hope we can keep him alive.

As the seedlings come up, my garden rabbit will come out of hibernation. He’ll be sure to keep an eye on this little cactus, too. Stay tuned!

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What’s your favorite thing this week?

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c.b.w. 2014

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