Saturday, March 16, 2013


I rose before 6 am so that I could pick up the eleven flats of onion seedlings languishing in the studio. I did not want to haul each down the 4 flights of stairs on Saturday; I wanted the elevator and its operator, Carlos, and that meant getting there early so I could still get to work on time. Carlos knows all about my ajo and cebollas, and his wife is a big fan.

The plan was to leave them in the van until tomorrow, sitting on top of 300 pounds of alfalfa meal, but I had a few spare moments to do today what needn't wait until tomorrow.

A couple went here, around the roses, the only spot new growth isn't seriously pushing up.

Most went in the side yard, a location that leaves me wary because it's the spot most often trashed by unknown (but sometimes known) feet. The weather is enough of a challenge, but the people, the wild cats, even a squirrel could do my trays in. Please, leave my cebollas alone!

Although my heart was in the right place, I ended up using some peat-based potting mix when I ran out of vermiculite. I will do better next year. Now, sun must do its part to make these guys stand up. I will feed with kelp and fish soon enough and plan to transplant by the end of March.

Other Migrations:

Three weeks ago, Betsy and I received notice that all artist tenants in our studio building will be, effectively, kicked out. Our leases are up in August, but they are forcing out those on the fifth floor by this April one. We were given until June, to which I replied that wasn't going to happen because of the harvest. Apparently the landlords are feeling pretty confident about our dismissal, despite the fact that most of us have new leases. They have offered to move us to another building, but at that building's new rate which is nearly double what we are now paying. Funny, I didn't see this coming because I thought they were satisfied with the 45 percent rate increase they demanded last year. If you want to know how this feels, read last year's complaint. I can't even give it any emotional energy. Simply put, it's over.

I do not know what we will do, or where we will go, or how this will change our art practices. I would like to mention an absurdity: I can rent an acre in The Hamptons, near the ocean, for 350 dollars a year or I can rent 140 square feet (1/300th of an acre) in Gowanus, near the canal, for 6300 dollars a year.

Update: less than 24 hours something already messed with my onion flats. Either cats were laying on them or a squirrel was digging in them, or more likely both. Bollocks.


  1. I share your outrage and don't understand how they can break the lease...naive of me, perhaps. Are they just bullies, betting on the fact they can harass you out of the space?

    1. Maybe. Buy they gave such short notice that those who tried to mount a defense have no time to do it. I think they know how many lawyers are in their corner vs ours.


If I do not respond to your comment right away, it is only because I am busy pulling out buckthorn, creeping charlie, and garlic mustard...