Valley Breeze

The Valley Breeze Cumberland Lincoln 06-06-2019

The Valley Breeze Newspapers serving the Northern Rhode Island towns of Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket, Smithfield, North Smithfield, Pawtucket, North Providence, Scituate, Foster, and Glocester

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4 ENTERTAINMENT / AT HOME JUNE 6-12, 2019 | VALLEY BREEZE LIVING EDITION mulch around all my flowers. Until a couple years ago, I used to just have a truckload of loose mulch delivered, but these days, shovel- ing it one wagon-load at a time and hauling it around from bed to bed involves more back-breaking labor than I even want to think about anymore. Now I just buy it by the bag, have it carefully loaded into the hatch of my car in a way that I can then easily roll it out, one bag at a time, right into my lawn cart and drop it right where it needs to go. Then I slit the sack open, scoop and dump, spread it around, and move on to the next bag. Although it's a lot easier than it used to be, it's still work and I'm thinking that maybe next year I'll make it even easier and just hire someone to do it all for me. But in the meantime, trapped as I am in the here and now, the mulch awaits and today and tomorrow I will be spreading it. That done, all that will remain is a bit of trimming and feeding to be done at my leisure. I mentioned my tomato garden a few paragraphs back and the truth is that this year when push came to shove, I decided to give it one more chance. Everyone kept telling me that last year was a really bad year for tomatoes. It was a fluke of nature, and I shouldn't take it as a personal failure that despite all my work all I had to show for it in the end was a handful or two of stunted fruit. But this year I decided I would cut way back. Instead of buying plants in multi-packs I would pur- chase the plants individually, keep- ing it to one cherry tomato plant and two ... maybe three ... Big Boy tomatoes. The plot is very small and there is already rhubarb grow- ing in one corner of it. No more overcrowding. No more making myself feel bad when it all goes to hell in a handbasket. This time I promised myself I would apply the K.I.S.S. rule (keep it simple, stupid!). I started by buying a single cherry tomato plant in a pot. Before I could even put that one plant in the ground, my neighbor Sue came over and handed me four tiny lettuce plants, three eggplant plants, and what looks like a squash plant of some sort ... maybe zucchi- ni. She was smiling broadly when she did it, explaining that she had just planted her garden and had these left over. The next day it was my friend Brenda who had bought more than she could use, and not wanting to overcrowd her garden, handed me two plum tomato plants that needed a home. And so there I was, with more than I needed, but needing to find room for them all, plus the one big healthy-looking Big Boy that I couldn't pass up on my last foray through the local nursery. So much for my carefully thought out plan to dig compost out from behind the shed, use some to top- dress the rhubarb and then mix a bunch more into the soil before lov- ingly spacing each carefully selected young plant and tucking it into the ground. To paraphrase Lord Byron's oft repeated quote about the best laid plans of mice and men, as usual, mine had all quickly gone awry. And so it came to pass that with rain ready to start falling and plants starting to wilt, I settled for quickly digging holes in the ground, stuck the plants in, hoped for the best and called it a day. That was a week ago and so far, so good. Except for the lettuce hav- ing been nibbled down to mere nubs within the first 36 hours, things look to be thriving. Time alone will tell how it goes, but with all of my weeding finally done ... Hallelujah! ... time is almost once again mine. Rhea Bouchard Powers is a writer from Cumberland. RHEA From Page One Skyscrapers meets at Seagrave Observatory SCITUATE – Skyscrapers Inc., the Amateur Astronomical Society of Rhode Island, will hold its monthly meeting on Friday, June 7, at 7 p.m., at Seagrave Memorial Observatory, 47 Peep Toad Road, North Scituate. The topic of the meeting will be "Observing on top of the mountain: Kitt Peak." Ian Dell'Antonio, a professor of physics at Brown University, has recently returned from Kitt Peak National Observatory in Arizona. He will show the many tele- scopes on the mountain, introduce the group to the equipment he used, and dis- cuss the research he has been performing. After his talk, the telescopes will be available for observing, if skies are clear. Contact Steve Hubbard at cstahhs@ gmail.com for more information, or visit www.theskyscrapers.org. SHS hosts Cabaret performance Friday SMITHFIELD – The Smithfield High School Music Department will present a Cabaret performance, of Broadway song and dance in an intimate setting, on Friday, June 7, with two shows at 6 and 8 p.m. The performance will be held in the SHS cafeteria, 90 Pleasant View Ave. Tickets are $10 per person, and will be available at the door or by email at kay- oung@smithfield-ps.org.

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