Sunday, June 28, 2015

roller coaster

our plucky heroine has had a week, and a weekend, of crazy ups and downs...

between dealing with my injured knee, trying to keep the house cool, and my beloved mother having mysterious scary medical issues (on the one hand) and the wonderful kindness of friends and family, and more delightful social time in one week than I usually have in a month (on the other hand) it is no wonder girl is exhausted. Fortunately have managed to keep my balance, more or less, and to keep both the hens and most of the assorted vegetation alive.

On the sunny end of the front porch, the San Marzano tomato plants are in a self watering planter box sitting atop two galvanised pots, and prunings of the plumtree from earlier this year make excellent support stakes. I will lash more crosspieces to the upright stakes and construct an "art project" to help keep the plants upright. They should do much better now in fertile soil that will not require twice a day watering. As I am not going away on any camping trips this summer (see torn meniscus) I should also be able to restart the salad table with extra daily attention, as our far too hot June weather caused all my spring greens to bolt and become bitter.

Mindy is so much help when she is here, my yard looks tidy and loved because she has skill and vision. My front walkway is all tidy, the last remaining brush from pruning earlier this year is cleared away for composting, and the crocosmia have come full circle from FjordsEnd and are tucked into another self watering planter box (next to the fig trees) as a temporary home over the summer. They will eventually be put into the ground to grow and spread.

Tiny peppermint cutting grew roots, and now is in a DIY mini self watering planter pot, made from a salvaged pop bottle. Since I never drink the stuff, it is a OOAK little project, but will be very handy to keep the mint alive and moist this summer. This is my favorite culinary mint, so I hope to eventually have it fill a larger planter on the front porch.

An assortment of culinary herbs growing here is such a simple way to add variety to my everyday cookery, and after taking the gardening class earlier this year, it was surprising to note how many useful plants are already here, planted over the last ten years: sage, thyme, winter savory, rosemary, lovage, horseradish, and salad burnet. Sadly the spearmint went to the great compost pile in the sky, but hopefully I can nurture this peppermint well and carefully.

Our long dry summers really make it clear that this is a Mediterranean climate not the rainforest most folks imagine. The front lawn is already turning brown and crunchy, and will not need mowing again til sometime in late autumn.

June SMART goals
1 Jen jumper thinned apples bag to Goodwill
2 grey popover pruned pear cankers bin of twigs
3 blue Norse tunic access to window bag to Goodwill
4 Jen jumper hallway shelf bag of books
5 peach gown for L yard mowed bag of books
6 - bigger chook yard bag of books
7 - pear tree gone bag of books
8 - fence gaps filled bag of books
9 - arborvitae pruned yard waste bin
10 - - driveway brushpile


  1. Garden looks lovely! I want o grow herbs but haven't managed to keep anything except chives alive in pots. I definitely want mint. Its so good in new potatoes.

  2. thank you Ruthie! This year I have managed to keep more things alive, probably since I have friends helping me! I have never before managed to keep mint alive, but I am determined not to kill this one. I will have to try it with new potatoes, when it is potato season; I like it in tzatziki (Greek salad of yoghurt, cucumbers, sometimes a wee bit of garlic and either mint or dill... and I look forward to when I have enough mint to be able to just add a few leaves to my drinking water too