Evening glow in the greenhouse

Evening glow in the greenhouse
WELCOME TO MY BLOG! I am glad you found me because I hope I can be helpful or at least interesting for you to follow, be you a gardener yourself or just watching vicariously.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Diary 1/29

Almost another month gone.  The days are getting longer, soon to be 10 hours of light.  Blogging now as it may be a busy day with baby, guests, firewood gathering, and packing for vacation...I will let you know through pictures I hope.  If I am silent next week, it means I could not figure out wireless connection!  Successful Brussel Sprouts this year.  They are sizing up early, before aphids arrive in a month or so.  I am excited to eat my own! Still have plenty of spinach here and there.  Broccoli making a comeback and cilantro ready to use.  Otherwise, not sure if any cauliflowers survived and kale is now sending up fresh leaves. I feel lucky to have any of it.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Diary 1/28

Tidying up.  May start peas soon.  It is so mild, but I am sure another cold snap is coming. 

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Diary 1/27

READY, SET, GONE!  The last of the old tomato plants left today thanks to help from the neighbor and friend, Alan.  My other neighbor and friend, Mel, helped clean up the strawberries in the greenhouse in the afternoon.  Good going guys!  The top greenhouse is looking pretty good now.  The bottom of the three where the cows attacked got its first clean-up today.  They stepped the edges of the beds off and made a mess of the aisles, but leaving it alone for a time helped me approach with resilient humor today.  I pictured 8 cows snuggled up and chewing their cuds in my greenhouse while it was 11 degrees outside.  Must have been cozy!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Diary 1/26

Wildflower pre-meeting meeting today.  The wildflower show I am involved with will have its first organizational meeting next Wed. for this year's show April 30th and May 1st.  We assemble 200 samples of flowers from our Upper Rogue River area, get small donations, raffle donated prizes, hold a boutique and plant sale the income of which we use to help the local fire department buy something they need. Last year it was CPR dummies.  It is a good thing as Martha Stewart would say.  Here is a picture of the collection pond below the garden with reflection of not much but a plastic greenhouse...

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Diary 1/25

You can't keep a good rhubarb down.  If you wander the old homestead sites in the hills here in spring, you will undoubtedly find some spindly asparagus and some rhubarb somewhere.  These things survive no care and were part of the diet of early 20th century homesteaders in this area.  Rhubarb has a limited use, long on Vitamin C, and needing alot of sweetener, it is still fun to see pop up in spring.  Make a crisp or add to frozen strawberries for pie or make a sauce for ice cream.  The large green leaves at the end of the rose pink stalks are poisonous, or so acidic they will hurt your tummy, so remove them and let them mulch where they lay.

Monday, January 24, 2011


Birthday party went well.  No melt downs and only one fat lip(Autumn's mouth vs. three year old, Jason's, head).  This morning Garden Dog was very excited about working in the yard.  When he is excited, he drools.  When he drools, it is apt to pick up debris.  Thus, look closely and you will see a chain of drool with leaves at the end kinda like earrings on each side of his doggie face.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Diary 1/23

Birthday party and football playoffs.  Everywhere I look by the edges of the garden there are places that look like fairy gardens...

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Diary 1/22

Another nice day.  Started out with a non-flushing toilet, but thanks to our friend Will's perseverance, it is working now.  Here is my haul back from the garden; my gloves, I remembered them for once!, four planters with four cells each to start some lettuce and rainbow chard, a little bit of celery from the clump I separated and transplanted, and a couple onions I found while cleaning a bed.  Good stuff.

Friday, January 21, 2011


I didn't know broccoli could freeze, but evidently 18 might be too cold for even broccoli.  My cauliflowers the size of golf balls melted into brown mush, too.  Just the wrong timing.  I still have some good broccoli, but pinching the middles and adding a new layer of soil as a mulch I can bring them around.  They don't all look frozen.  More greenhouse cleaning today.  I wanted to add to yesterday's benefit of adding water to the beds is that the mass increases-the water fills in the air pockets- and so it all holds temperature better.  Yes I am adding cold water, but each day that it is 60 degrees or warmer in the greenhouses, the warmer the soil can get.  Eventually we will have some full sun days, and it will continue to warm up into the 70's, hold heat, and help heat the air in there for night time radiation.  That's what it is all about. Then with it warm, the microbes can really get going.

Diary 1/20

Before watering

After watering
When your mouse dies on your computer, you are pretty much out of luck these days.  Maybe there is still a way to get to DOS and start typing three letter commands //, but I don't know how.  Anyway, it would never get to the internet, would it?  So, now with new set-up, I am back once more.  I think the flash of electricity might have taken its toll, but just took it slower.  Worked in greenhouses yesterday, cleaning old stuff out and getting water going.  The water changes the hard, dead, soil into something with wonderful texture, worms, and viability.  I will work some more beds over today and maybe start turning a couple for later use.  It is almost time to poke some peas in, so that is my first goal.  Still white flies in there, may have to sterilize some areas by torching the soil top.  The worms duck down when they feel the heat, but the eggs of the bad guys can't.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Diary 1/19

Babysitting again while mom learns new job and dad is working on nailing down Forest Service job.  Not getting much done, which on a sunny day like today starts to make me toe tap.  Ah well, soon...Meanwhile getting started on tractor lessons.  Should send this photo off to New Holland.  Notice clench of Grandma's hand on baby! Need to get grandson caught up, he is three months older after all.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


The giant blueberry bushes finally got their homes.  They have not been allowed to spread their branches quite yet as there is more peat moss to add to their holes.  Babysitting and writing at night.  Yoga, too!  I have a great life this time of year.  Not too busy to enjoy...

Monday, January 17, 2011

Diary 1/17

Cleaned perennial beds around the yard.  Saw the sun for a little while and the temperature was around 50 degrees.  Nice!  As a reward I guess, I trimmed off the old hollyhock spikes and peeled back some rotten comfrey stems and oak leaves to find a surprise: hiding there, two violets blooming bravely by the base of an elderberry tree.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Dairy 1/16

As I was saying, there has been quite a bit of rain and with the melting snow, we are on the edge of flood stage around here.  Our neighbors were not home, but after a couple phone calls they have come home to find under their house a bit inundated.  I think the foundation is high enough, as long as we are cresting soon.  No, the other picture is not Elk Creek, but the overflow we have so the high water doesn't take our property by the creek away bit by bit.  It is as full as I can ever remember, but according to NOAA, they were not predicting any record levels. Hope they are right for our neighbor's and many other down stream's sake.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Diary 1/15

Nice morning, glad I got out for a walk with Garden Dog, Gopher Tender, and grand daughter as it is raining substantially now.  Nothing but work awaits in the garden, but better weather and longer days, and sun? are coming soon, so not to worry.  I see all the branches that need to go in the orchard.  I see all the raspberries that need to be thinned.  I head for home and relax.  It's the weekend!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Diary 1/14

Researching and writing as it is super dreary outside.  The creek is up as are the snow levels, raining all the way up to 6000 feet, melting snow as it does.  I have gone to the garden to pick greens, but little else.  It is just not that inviting.  I received a call from a member of my CSA wondering if she should send money.  Wow!  I am definitely in the right business.  Another gentleman asked to join and I had to tell him I was not looking for new members at this time.  He offered to pay double whatever I was asking just to get on board.  I am supposed to get in touch with him in this new year and new season, but I don't know how I feel about his offer or exactly how I feel about my whole business in general.  It is so easy to be eager in spring and overwhelmed in summer, but not me, not this year!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Diary 1/12

Mostly winter cleaning today.  There are closets I haven't been to the back of for five or six years and whatever might have been a priority to save then, surely did not have the same importance today.  Though it was slightly difficult to say good-bye to three bags of the children's stuffed animals, I wasn't quite sure why I had saved them last time.  Narrowing five bags of what-not clothes into one very small one was easier.  The next plan is to go through the three tubs of photos and create folders in a file cabinet to hold them in a way they can be enjoyed without digging through the variety of subjects when all you wanted was a picture of the house before the big oak fell or something. Meanwhile, outside the rain fell and more snow left indicating damage here and there to trees whose branches could not hold the heavy wet snow of two weeks ago.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Diary 1/11

The date today is 1/11/11.  Wow!  I keep thinking about the little girl and the others who were killed in the Arizona rampage.  We all need to be aware of what hatred can do.  The misguided, instability of the man, boy? who did the shooting is as sad as the fate of those who attended a ralley so innocently.  Be nice, people.  It is important.  Sorry, I just had to say something.  The snow is receding and showing all the work that lies ahead.  In some ways I am ready for some warmer weather, but coming in just now I see we are to deal with a new phenomena, MUD!  8 elk spotted up the hill.  As the snow goes away, there is great new tendrils of grass and young shoots on the bushes waking up.  Great feed for pregnant mamas who have to feed almost 18 hours a day.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Diary 1/10

Blueberry holes are ready for mondo bushes, maybe tomorrow.  Seems like it takes all day to warm up and then the day is over!  Ah well, days are getting longer I can tell already.  Fixing stuffed celery for football game snack and found a slug between stalks. As it came from the store,  I was so happy to do so because I know how hard it is for me to get every last bug off when I am washing produce for sale.  Lets me know it must have been organic!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Diary 1/9

Slow day, cold and a skiff of snow.  Still getting back into the groove here.  Working on planting blueberry bushes we bought from a farm getting rid of 15 year old plants.  Putting them closer to the house to ward off elk.  Big Oregon game tomorrow, a lot of hoopla locally. 

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Diary 1/8

Happy New Year!  I'm back.  As my friend wrote to you, my computer died.  A beautiful snow storm hit on December 30th with one foot of snow.  That knocked our power out between 5 and midnight and I didn't get to blog because I was just returning from Eugene.  Then, the next morning we had turned everything back on and a branch hit our part of the line, breaking the ground wire and frying surge protectors left and right.  We did get the TV, printer, and monitor turned off, but not the tower.  So close.  Anyway, something exploded in the corner and we could smell burning wires, so we rushed to flip the breaker on the whole house.  A trip outside showed our power line dangling just above the ground and then the broken wire.  Everything survived except my 7 year old computer tower.  Pretty good it lasted that long.  Could have replaced power unit, but then the hard drive was on its last legs and cooler was struggling, so was video fan or something.  So...new tower and a trip to the coast later, I am back in business.  Hope I haven't lost too many of you followers, and I myself have alot of following to catch up on.