Weathering Winter: A Gardener's Daybook

Carl H. Klaus, Author University of Iowa Press $19.95 (202p) ISBN 978-0-87745-594-3
After the theatrical, profligate growth recorded in Klaus's lovely My Vegetable Love: A Journal of a Growing Season, it's hard to imagine what he'll do with sterile winter. But the dead of winter is a misnomer, and during the two and a half months (December 31st to March 15th) recorded here, he recounts the swings in the season and his own mood. From the first wrinkly, overpriced store-bought green pepper, he thinks of his own crops. Working with the odd spider plant, household geranium or cymbidium orchid isn't enough for Klaus. Although the garden is largely inactive, the gardener can't be, and Klaus bides his time in optimistic plantings, in fears for vegetables exposed to harsh temperatures, in defrosting the bounty of harvests past and, most of all in gardening dreams, that first of which arrives in the indescribably enticing form of a seed catalogue. He's at his best when he describes the loveliness of winter, like the red of the barberry against the snow, or a day ""so cold and dry that flakes glisten in the air and glitter on the snow."" But winter is clearly not Klaus's favorite season, and too much of his daybook is thinking about the weather, checking the pulse of the season, looking for signs that it is on its way out. In this way, in particular, this seems like a prelude to My Vegetable Love, in which Klaus reveals his true passions. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 09/29/1997
Release date: 10/01/1997
Genre: Nonfiction
Open Ebook - 196 pages - 978-1-58729-126-5
Paperback - 202 pages - 978-0-87745-871-5
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