Wednesday, June 29, 2022

garden report #?

 It was a dreary spring. Cold. Wet. Foggy. Overcast. The garden struggled. Some of the seeds I planted never sprouted. I blamed the weather. It was colder and greyer than usual. Volunteer oriental poppies did thrive. Peas languished. We have a zucchini plant that has grown nicely. Big leaves. Flowers. But small hard rind fruits. While I was cleaning the garden shed I found a large plastic bag of lime, obviously from the garden place where I shop. Oh no. Did I forget to add the lime to my mix of bulk stuff fertilizer? I recalled  a soil test kit that I have I have.

So I collected samples from two of our raised beds, dried them and prepped them as directed. Actually measuring the chemical makeup of the soil using the test kit is a bit tedious but very informative.

Finished the first sample. WHOA. The soil ph is 8! which is very acidic. Most veggies do best in neutral-to-slightly-basic soil. It is also woefully low in nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium! That explains a lot. Still, that is still just one bed that i have tested so far out of seven. In afterthought I should have first tested the soil in which the zucchini is growing. and yet we grow a lot of kale very successfully in other beds. i will fertilize the zucchini. a quick check with dr. Google on zucchini growing reminded me that zucchini fruit sometimes needs to be hand pollinated to grow well. I have done that in some years past. have done so now.

                                              sciency stuff

                                              scientist (resting)

                                               zucchini (poor quality)

Monday, June 27, 2022

Agave Again

 We walked by the Agave plant the other day and was delighted by how much it had it had grown since I first photographed less than a month ago.

This is what it looked like at the end of May.

This is what it looked like Sunday morning, June 26th. 

It's gotten very, very tall. And now it has a lovely bud on top. We're so looking forward to it blooming.

This Agave has quite a presence. We love watching it grow... and it takes our mind off the absolutely crazy times we are living in, even for a brief moment.

Friday, June 24, 2022

The Last Photo

I've been thinking and thinking and thinking about buying a new camera. My Panasonic Lumix is very old. It's been wonderful over the years, but it seemed time to move on. I started looking at new Panasonic cameras. I spoke with friends who have them and other friends who have other cameras. I know nothing about cameras. I am a point and click person. I just know where to look for a nice moment. So, then I started thinking about buying a new iPhone because I've read that the camera is really very good. Still, I didn't make any choices. I have a hard time making big decisions like this. Then the camera made it for me.

There are eight photos on the camera that I took over the past few days. The camera has been misbehaving and not connecting to my computer to download. It has done that to me in the past, but I could always get it to connect and download on Roger's computer. Now it won't even do that. This is one of the last photos this camera will ever take. A moment of sunlight on the spider webs in the cedar tree behind our deck. A sunlit moment of farewell. 

So now I really do have to buy a new iPhone. If you have any suggestions I would love to read them. It's hard to make these choices. In the meantime I have the iPhone 6 to use until I make the big leap into the new world.  

Wednesday, June 22, 2022

A Song From Long Ago

 Fellow blogger Catalyst left a comment on the previous post with a lyric from this song. I loved being reminded of this song so much, I just had to post it here. It's the song that made me want to move to California from New Jersey. The song came out in 1967, and I made it to San Francisco in 1970. It's a wonderful look back at a time of such hopeful innocence, something we need these day. Please be sure to wear some flowers in your hair...

Sunday, June 19, 2022


If the grandkids hadn't come by for a visit I would have never known that nasturtium flowers (and stems and leaves) are edible. We were out in the yard and they were picking flowers like crazy and eating them. They were posing adorably with them as well.

I checked Wikipedia and found this info about Nasturiums.

All parts of Tropaeolum majus are edible. The flower has most often been consumed, making for an especially ornamental salad ingredient; it has a slightly peppery taste reminiscent of watercress, and is also used in stir fry. The flowers contain about 130 mg vitamin C per 100 grams (3.5 oz),[24] about the same amount as is contained in parsley.[25] Moreover, they contain up to 45 mg of lutein per 100 g,[26] which is the highest amount found in any edible plant. The unripe seed pods can be harvested and dropped into spiced vinegar to produce a condiment and garnish, sometimes used in place of capers.[27]

Little kids can teach this old lady a few things these days. I love it! They also made a few collages for us with years and years of old calendars that we save for them to cut up and paste. A lovely visit after their very last day at school. Ah freedom! They were so happy. 

And today is Father's Day. We remember our fathers with so much love in our hearts and a shout out to the universe to them. Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there. 

Wednesday, June 15, 2022

Recent Random Photos

  I thought I'd share a few recent random photos from the past few days. 

The sky has been beautiful.

The potato plants are blooming.

The path at the marsh is lined with California poppies.

The Cirrus Vertebratus cloud was tall and beautiful.

Our early morning view of flying saucers!

That's what June has looked like so far. I wonder what's next!

Monday, June 13, 2022

Clouds and Shadows

 Taking a short walk in the afternoon, watching the clouds as they blow across the sky casting shadows on the road.  A short 24 seconds of sunlight and clouds, road and shadows.

Friday, June 10, 2022

Extraction Distraction

 I had a tooth pulled on Wednesday and I was distracted (fearful, anxious, neurotic, and sleepless) for a few days before that. Dentist offices are not fun. They can't help it; they have to do work that is uncomfortable and sometimes painful. In one of my previous lives (1979-81), I worked for a dentist in Eugene, Oregon. He taught me how a thoughtful, kind and good dentist works with patients like me. I have high expectations. The dentist we are seeing now is the fourth dentist since we moved here in 2015. I have high expectations. So, I had my tooth pulled. It literally took 5 seconds to get it out. There were several numbing injections prior to that easy pull. For the first time in my 70 years on earth, the dental assistant who was sitting at my side, patted my shoulder during each shot. It made me smile (not really, couldn't smile, but I was happy for her kindness). Then yank, and it was gone. I am so glad that is over. I am fine. Are any of you out there fearful of dentists? I'd love to know. 

In the meantime, I did get to photograph a few things during my extraction distraction. 

A few of the raised beds in our backyard. It's been sunny and warm and beautiful here.

Our fence art compass has a foxglove heading west. This photo was taken on May 31st.

Here it is nine days later. It grows pretty fast. I think it wants to see what's behind the fence.

I noticed these mushrooms growing in the bed with the green beans. I think they are making a culinary suggestion about beans and mushrooms, but we are not going to take their advice.

My brother in Virginia wanted to see the flowers in our front yard, so I sent him this photo. Here they are in all their overgrown flourishing beauty.

And finally, I saw a unicorn in the sky. Do you see it? I hope so.

Monday, June 06, 2022

Sunshine and Rain, Life and Death

This past week has been mostly gray, rainy and windy. It's raining as I type this. It's supposed to clear up this week, and we are so hoping that's true. The tomatoes need the light. Me too. I must be part tomato. When the sun shone briefly the other day I photographed the Oriental Poppy in our yard.

I love these flowers. They are so big and beautiful. They brighten the yard even on a bleak and gray day. They reseed themselves and spread out there. This is one plant growing next to the cauliflower and broccoli raised bed.

On the day of brief sunshine I also photographed the early morning light as it shone through the front gate.

I want that kind of light every morning. I would even be glad to have it every other morning. It's how a day should begin.

I read some sad news the other day about an old blogger friend from the early days of blogging. His blog was Coffee Messiah. He was a barista in Indiana. He was a lovely artist who created interesting works of collage art. He sent a few photos to me over the years. I want to share them here. 

Sadly, he was diagnosed with cancer a year ago and died last Tuesday. He had a lovely presence in the blogging world. I just want him to know he will be remembered.

In other news, I got my second booster shot on Friday. My arm still hurts a bit, but other than that it was fine. I'm glad to have that done. I hope this pandemic ends and that we will someday be able to return to our normal everyday lives... whatever that may be. I can hardly remember anymore. 

Take care, friends, stay safe and well.