Sunday, June 26, 2011

Weekend of June 18-19 2011

Happy Birthday Mom and Happy Father's Day Dad!

Last weekend was my Mom's 29th birthday and Father's Day... I was up at the hill house because I knew I was going to see them this weekend. I did go to Madera this weekend and attended a lavender class with Mom in the morning. We learned how to harvest lavender and make things with it. It was actually a fun class and then later I finally got my hair done! We went to dinner and had a really fun time.

Anyway back to last weekend at the house... I left work early friday the 17th because frankly, work has been just eating away at me. I felt like I was going to just shut down on Friday if I didn't leave and my boss (who is a saint) took one look at me and said "go home". I really didn't do a lot up there but I did put some effort into weeding the veggie garden. I was able to eat some peas, onions and potato.. yes singular from that garden when I was there. You see a gopher has moved in and they like to eat potatoes too. They eat them from under the ground so you just see your plant dying and you go to pull it up and there is the potato half eaten...sigh... let's recap the critters that want to eat my garden shall we?
1. Deer- ate all the sunflowers (nick wants to shoot them)
2. Squirrels love greens!
3. Gophers eat the potatoes
4. Turkeys - eat everything
5. Birds tear at the leaves 
I don't know how I am ever going to beat these guys but hopefully something will work. I actually don't mind sharing as I planted way more than I need so that they could have some and I could have some. Doesn't seem like they want to share with me though!
The gopher is driving my dog Casey crazy.. she has an incredible nose and can smell them so she just starts digging. She dug one trench in the morning and found the gopher's den but he/she wasn't there, of course. Then later we went out in the evening and that darn gopher had dug up a new tunnel like it was challenging her and she went bonkers! Here is the outcome..
Casey on a mission to destroy a gopher!
I let her go until she started getting close to the plants and then made her stop.. and washed her off. She is getting older now, 13 years old but man! Give her a gopher trail to follow and she will not stop!

My garden has some pluses though.. Corn is doing good and my peas and tomatoes are just going crazy! I planted the tomatoes too close together now that I can see them growing... but oh well. The beans are running up the fence and over, but something really likes them as well. Eating my green beans before I can and I am pretty sure it is the squirrel. The corn has a cob on one stalk and the others are growing. The asparagus is coming along and some of the squash/canteloupe is trying...the watermelon and the peppers don't seem to be able to stand a chance. But hey! I have 1 pumpkin plant that has survived and is doing good! We might get a decent jack-o-lantern out of it yet... I want to get my niece and nephew some really big pumpkins this year. I know they would love it.. they are just at the right age.
Corn doing well!

Green beans are climbing the fence and getting eaten by some critter...


Peas are doing awesome! I ate all of these and my baby potato and it was just the best!
Woohoo! One of the giant pumpkins survived!

that is a group of the 6 tomatoes.. note to self.. spread them out next year

Baby Granny Smith Apple from that one tree.. you really don't want to try and eat it..
Black Eyed Susan (Rudbeckia) in my yard

Other news... July 18th I will be at the house all week getting my siding put on the house.. one more time for those of you who don't think I need to do it. Here is just one small picture to show you how damaged the house is..  Also, my veggie garden still has dozens of ladybugs and new surprise. The tiny California tree frog loves my garden. Probably because of the water and the bugs there.. a couple of them posed for pictures below. They are not longer than 1 inch.
By the front door, woodpecker holes with their stash of acorns.
frog #1 in my yard

Frog #2 in my yard
How can you tell an organic garden? Does it have weeds and bugs and frogs and such? You got an organic garden without having to do a soil test!
Next week is Fourth of July and I hope if you want to to come visit, you let me know! My family is coming and we should have a great time!

Ciao!
Julie