Hi there! Welcome to my very miscellaneous blog. Here, I write about everything from mis-used words to gardening, to bad habits in society to going places and seeing things! Enjoy my ramblings.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

In Another Garden

Today brought more pleasant weather.  So much to to, but took a small break from the veggie garden side, as it is pretty much as prepped as we need...just a few minor weeds.  All that remains is to stay on top of it, and wait for the rainy season to taper off, so cloudbursts don't wash away newly planted seeds.

So, we turned our focus to some deferred and neglected items in the front yard.  There were dandelions approaching 2 feet tall in the landscape plantings, and they had to go.  My Chrysanthemums are sporting new growth, so all the dead wood from last year had to be cut back.

Whew!  Next,  after I finish taking this breather, I'll be going back out to refill/overflow my backyard fountain to get rid of the accumulated algae that has the water all green.  It is right oustide my bedroom window, and makes a very pleasant type of music to which I can fall asleep, imagining myself out camping by a babbling brook.

The cats also enjoy the fountain, as it is frequented by birds coming to drink or bathe, and they watch out the window, lash their tails, and dream futile kitty dreams of catching one.  It is not to be, as they are not allowed outdoors for their own safety, as well as that of the wild birds.  But, they seem to enjoy watching the world go by out the window.  They are so comfortable being exclusively indoor kitties that they don't much try to head out the door if it is opened. 

The front and back lawns...or, more accurately, front lawn and backyard weed patch, have been mowed, thanks to hubby, so all is neat and tidy looking once again.  Unfortunately, our robo-gopher is still active, so we will have to keep a very close eye on the veggie patch.  So far (knock wood), there has been no evidence of gopher activity in that area.

For those of you in other areas or other countries, a gopher is defined by the American Heritage Dictionary as follows:

 "go·pher NOUN:  1.) Any of various short-tailed, burrowing rodents of the family Geomyidae of North America, having fur-lined external cheek pouches. Also called pocket gopher."

 You can see a photo of one here.  They are marginally cute, but horrifically destructive of plant materials of many types.  Someone asked me if it was another name for a woodchuck. No, it is not. Those are much larger. (op.cit.): 

"wood·chuck NOUN:  A common burrowing rodent (Marmota monax) of northern and eastern North America, having a short-legged, heavy-set body and grizzled brownish fur. Also called groundhog,** also called regionally whistle pig."  (Italics are mine.) 

**a la "Punxatawney Phil"   ;-)  Photo of one here.  I do not think we have woodchucks/groundhogs in our part of the country, but I cannot swear to that...I simply have never seen one, or heard of anyone else seeing one locally.

Back to the fountain--the current issue will be to try and keep it free of falling almond blossoms, as it sits right beneath one of the almond trees on the property.  They are very old, and were here when we bought the house.  Ironically, we have all these almond crops and neither of us particularly care for almonds.  Nor to we know the first thing about their harvest and drying or roasting.  So, it is a bounty for the squirrels and birds, and they are welcome to them.  We enjoy watching them scamper about in the trees.

However, keeping the fountain clear of debris is an endless task.  It feels as if "The Borg" are in charge.  I hear their phrase, "Resistance is futile," echoing in my head on a daily basis all spring, summer and fall.  I have worn out 2 fish nets so far, and the 3rd one has been patched together with cable ties.  The fine mesh is best for scooping out debris, as much of it is very small.  The fish net even succeeds in grabbing some of the algae.

There---this is much better:

And see--more almond blossom petals have already fallen in!

The last photo shows the 'back 40' and one of the other almond trees, as well as our 'view.'  It isn't very impressive.  In fact, it makes me angry every time I see it.  There used to be an abandoned orchard back there, and it housed rabbits, raccoons, skunks, (well, ok we don't much miss the skunks), all kinds of birds, and was much more pleasant to look at.  Then, along came an outfit that wanted to build homes, and they bulldozed the orchard, added many feet of fill dirt to 'store' on the site...and then the bottom fell out of the housing market, the deal fell through, they backed out, and we are left with this unsightly scene, and the animals are all gone.

Eventually, we want to plant a row of trees along the back as something better to look at, but, we cannot at the moment--as we do not yet have city sewer service, and the area is right behind the septic tank.  Besides, there are no funds to buy trees now, anyway.  Sigh.

And that is it for today--posted quite late in the evening, due to a series of things, starting with an accident involving a glass of iced tea and my keyboard just when I was about to upload these photos. 

 By the time that was cleaned up and the keyboard dried out, {computer is ok...keyboard has a minor issue--I cannot type a capital 'c.'  Nothing happpens at all..spot stays empty waiting for input.  :-(  },  it was dinnertime, and then, time to watch the closing ceremonies for the Olympics.  (I don't know why I watch that stuff, when I know it's going to make me cry!) 

So, here I am, getting my Sunday post up on Sun-night.

This was, obviously, a bit of a digression from my vegetable garden...but still, dealt (mostly) with gardening, so it's all good, right?  ;-)


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