Friday, November 20, 2009

The End

I'm all done!  It's been about a year and a half since I started gardenlog, to observe and record the North Idaho seasons, critters, plants and gardening adventures.  It's been great fun, and I've loved taking all the pictures.  But now it's time for something new.  Thank you for reading, and for your wonderful comments. 

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Fall colors and patterns

This log is embossed with an intricate maze of worm tunnels.
This is one of those times when I realize that we aren't that clever, our best designs are just copies of things that exist in nature.

This view looks to me like salmon swimming upstream, what are those worms up to?

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

It's not even winter yet and I've had enough

This cheers me up.  Why can't it always be spring?

It's 45 degrees, and partly sunny at 1:45 pm.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Cat tricks

The face of an angel. Today Snoodly jumped on my lap and simultaneously put his paw on my lunch. I almost thought it was an accident. But now I remember he's done it before! He's got some moves, that's for sure. It doesn't get him the food, but it does get him a tasty paw to lick. Snoodly casts a long shadow

Woolly thyme

Rusty's favorite log

It's 44 degrees and sunny today with 35% humidity at 1:20 pm.

Monday, November 2, 2009

It's Cold, It's Dark, It's November!

The Larch are a deeper gold now, almost done for the year. When they first change to bright golden yellow, they remind me of a Christmas ornament I grew up with. It was a little glass tree with gold trim, old and delicate.
We had a little snow a few days ago, but nothing stuck. It's been mostly cold and damp, when it's not cold and dry, enough to keep the fire going continuously. I love hanging out in the house, but I do feel healthier when I force myself to go outside.
There's a coyote prowling around, no doubt after the scent of our cats and their cat food. Rusty was in the kitchen and caught sight of him outside and then shot across the room and up the stairs. I hope he doesn't get the kitties, we should probably move them inside, but they're so rambunctious and messy. And who would catch all the mice in the garage? Snoodly is almost as big as Rusty now, he's a fine Tiger beast, and I think he will surpass Rusty soon.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

October chill

This guy was fascinated with our clothesline. It kind of looks like he was really just posing for pictures. I love the way moose look like they're smiling, with their mouths, and their eyes.
He and mom stopped by for a drink and a snack from the willows. (The white blanket is covering the new flower bed in the foreground.)
The deer come daily, nightly. They've made a mess of my new flower bed. But how can I be mad at them for long with faces like that? One night I heard clicking and clacking outside the bedroom window and looked out to see two young fellas sparring, while a younger one grazed on grass a few feet away. It looked like the teenagers were babysitting, and trying to have some fun on the job. It isn't hard to relate to these creatures and love them.

It isn't hard to hate them either. I have to cover the flowers with the white blanket day and night to protect them from the destructive little beasts. Yeah, that's what I wanted, a view of a white blanket from my kitchen window.

It wasn't me, you can't prove it, nobody saw me do it.

The weather has finally cooled down, after a warm September. First frost wasn't until September 21st. But now it's cold enough to have the fire going. We've got wood from a big Ponderosa that fell, and we're buying some more birch.

Of course now is when I realize I've got to paint the cabinet! That zero voc paint I got from Sherwin Williams seems to absorb odors, or go bad. I think the Bioshield stuff is ok, I should've stuck to using that.

I've been getting my mercury amalgam fillings removed. It's a great relief to me to get that poison out of there. As much as I hate the dentist, it's difficult for me to get all this work done, but way overdue. I'm doing what I can to detox and get the mercury out. I certainly seem to have all the symptoms of someone with poisoning--tremors! Vision problems. And many more. Yikes, why didn't any doctor mention that? I hate doctors, they are beyond stupid! They never, ever help! The only thing you can do to improve your health is to help yourself, be your own doctor.

It's a good time to start walking. It's also a good time for a road trip! I've been watching the National Park show---A Film by Ken Burns (don't you forget it!)---and it has reminded me of all the parks we visited on our big road trips back in 1999-2000, before we moved to Idaho. What an adventure. We went to the Grand Canyon, Mesa Verde, Arches, Yellowstone, Teton, Mt. Rainier, Crater Lake, and a bunch of state parks too. Those were the days. What happened to our adventurous spirit? Now we can't get off the couch. We traded it all in for 10 acres and a nice house. Our cars have over 200,000 miles on them, could we even make the trip if we wanted to? There's only one way to find out. So, will it be Glacier? Or Mt. Rainier again? I think the desert sounds good, I love rocks. And sun. Then again, I love big trees too. We'll just have to do another big circuit.

It's 52 degrees, sunny and windy.

Saturday, September 5, 2009


Welcome to Hogwarts. Nah, it's just the library at the University of Washington. But it feels like Hogwarts inside, with a huge stone staircase that just might start moving.
The University was founded in 1861, which is old for these parts. The buildings are magnificent and make you feel about two feet tall.
There's a wonderful pool with a fountain, surrounded by rose gardens and more magnificent buildings.
Herbology, I mean Biology.
Looks pretty good on a sunny day. But remember, this is Seattle, blue sky is not going to be the norm.
Our student tour guide told us that you can see Mt. Rainier from this spot when the conditions are right (we wondered if that ever happened) and that this was deemed the best view of the mountain by someone or other a long time ago and a law was enacted to protect it from obstruction. Now that's my kind of law. I can imagine sitting here, gazing at the view while pondering my herbology thesis.
What a huge school though, a little bit overwhelming. And some of the architecture is very 70s: Butt ugly. The dorms we saw looked like cell blocks. I guess the austere feeling goes away when 42,000 students are milling around, but I think we need to look at some smaller, cozier schools for comparison. Thanks to Jr. for taking all the pictures.

We couldn't go to Seattle without visiting IKEA and Trader Joe's. We got Slammy a new bed and had to put roof racks on the car to get it home. While we were dealing with this, Jr. got to sit in that red sports car at a Nissan dealership, which he admits was the highlight of the trip for him.
Rusty got in the bag I was airing out on the porch after the trip. Ofcourse as soon as I came out to take his picture he got out of the bag to greet me, so I made him get back in and he sat there agreeably, posing for pictures. Anything for attention.
It's 79 degrees, 23 % humidity and clouding over at 3:30 pm.

A Miracle Has Occurred

Red tomatoes! Those little "Siberias" win the prize, they're small but mighty. 'Course the greenhouse helped too. I think I'll make some more salsa tonight. Here's how I've been doing it: First I drop the maters in hot water to remove the skin, then I chop them up and add chopped onions and cilantro and a sprinkle of salt. Please share your favorite recipe if you have one. Oh! I didn't plant hot peppers this year (a lost cause usually) they would be good in there too.

Bees bees and more bees

The cilantro is covered in honeybees, and below this are strawberries, covered in yellow jackets.
Does this remind you of a motorcyle cop?
Just coming in for a landing when I took this picture of an orange cosmos.
We have more honeybees than ever this year, it's wonderful to see them all. They're mostly on the cilantro, lavender, and mint; all herbs with hundreds of little flowers. I wonder what herb honey tastes like, mmmm, I think it must be pretty tasty.

Butterfly bush

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Harvest Time

The past week has been wet and cool, with highs only reaching 70 degrees, and lots of thunderstorms. I decided to enclose the greenhouse again, just in case. Wheat farmers are none too happy about the rain, but it was a joy and great relief to me. I'm concentrating on sending it down south to where they really need it now.

The harvest includes some nice yellow potatoes, swiss chard, carrots, beans, onions and zucchini and lo and behold, a bit of lettuce that survived the heat. The fenced garden is much cooler, and better for crops like lettuce, I must remember that next year. Tomatoes in the greenhouse are still green. Having a bit of trouble with the soaker hose watering in the greenhouse. It seems to be bypassing the beans and a few others, leaving them thirsty, while flooding other areas. Very tricky business, watering. No wonder farmers flood their fields, it's the only way to ensure everything gets a good drink.

The sunflowers are about 5 ft. tall in the garden. A few volunteers came up elsewhere, but the deer beheaded them. They must be salivating over those ones behind the fence. I don't know if they'll have time to bloom, we only have a couple of weeks left before the first frost.

The chillier nights have turned some leaves already.
The Echinacea and Rudbeckia are becoming more cone like as summer winds down.

But some of the flowers still look fresh as a daisy:




Prairie Mallow (I ordered this from Guerneys and it was supposed to be bright red).

Moje Hammarberg Rose and Heliopsis

This rose is "a more compact and flowerful version of Hansa" and has a strong spicy scent which is heavenly. It's a Rugosa grown on its own root, so it's practically indestructible. My favorite rose, so far. I also love the Heliopsis and picked up a couple more this year. It looks sunflowery but the deer leave it alone.

The hunting party. They followed me around as I took pictures.
Snoodly managed to catch a hummingbird on the bee balm one day, which is now done flowering and cut down. We'll have no more of that, Snoodly.

Safe, up in the hanging baskets.
Grasshoppers are one of Snoodly's favorite snacks, though he seems tired of them now. There are thousands of them. The plants move as you walk by.

The squirrels are getting fat on pine nuts. Another sign that winter approaches. This little lady was nibbling away until the cats approached me, then she became still as a statue. She knows who not to trust.

Beware the panther.
It's 69 degrees and cloudy at 11:45 am.