|Lilac in front, Kerria with yellow cheeseball flowers in background|
During our weather reprieve the lawns all were mowed, a new raised bed constructed, an existing garden was enlarged with a truckload of compost and my spring pruning commenced. The lilacs burst into bloom with the heat. I have a hedgerow of five huge bushes, of which I severely pruned three last fall, but all have flowered including my new one in the front yard. I have two Japanese double Kerria bushes and the small one in the front yard is doing a very nice bloom; the backyard one is 6x6 feet and looks like a giant mound of cheese balls. Both plants give very satisfying spring blooms after the bulbs have passed.
We are back to wearing cardigans and cowls, as well as enjoying a hearty bowl of soup. Here is one of my favorite large quantity soups: Italian Garden Soup
Saute in olive oil 2-3 onions, chopped with 3 stalks of celery, diced
Add 48oz. of low sodium chicken broth
Add 2-14.5oz. cans of diced tomatoes with juice
1 block of frozen spinach
6 fresh mushrooms, sliced
2 small zucchini, diced into bite-size chunks
Season to taste with basil, oregano and 1 bay leaf
Partially defrost in microwave for 2 minutes a 14oz. bag of Fit 'N' Active Turkey meatballs on a plate & add to soup (Aldi's brand)
Pour in 1-16oz. bag of frozen cheese tortellini
Simmer to boiling then return to simmer in covered large soup pot for a half an hour. Serves 6 generously. Excellent leftover and reheated.