Tag Archives: dogs


I’ve been working on Mt. Mulch in the rear garden. Mt. Mulch is the truck full of mulch that we had someone deposit on the grounds in order to mulch in the paths in the various gardens and around the trees. The first load, which was up front, I had some help to finish off from family. This time, it’s only me hacking away at it. It’s good exercise, really, but it takes a toll on your traps, from squeezing together armfuls of it to toss into the wheelbarrow. Why pick it up by hand? Have you ever tried using a shovel on a big pile of mulch? That’s a one way ticket to exhaustion and sore everything (and lots of cursing). It’s faster to do it by hand. The only downside is that while the top of the pile is dry, it’s wet under that layer, making it a chore to carve out a chunk to move to the barrow.

Goal: six barrows a day loaded, dumped, and spread, in order to get the back garden finished. That’s about the limit my morning shake gives me in terms of calories/energy, but it works out well since I can generally get one eight foot long section mulched at about an inch per barrow load- which in turn gives me one full row done on the long side of the garden. It’s a lot of mulch, but I only have four rows left, plus the large non-row area where there is currently nothing but which I’m considering for containers. I should be able to finish the mulching of the back area this week and then move on to the berries on the easterly fenceline to get those done.

After the daily loads, it was dog shaving time, something I did in bare feet on the front porch instead of getting dog hair in my boots and socks. They’re so cute with their cuts, but I suspect they were pooped after the excitement/stress of it all.

Tomorrow: more mulching. More flats to go under the lights. More something else. There’s always something else.

The air up here

Bad blogger, bad! No posting on a regular basis, what is wrong with you?

Nothing wrong, just incredibly busy around here. Our season has lasted well into the winter, and we’re still harvesting peppers. The tomatoes that showed some promise going into fall succumbed to massive worm damage, so once again this year, like last, no tomatoes (although for wildly different reasons, given that last year it was a cancer of a different sort).

There’s a monarch butterfly chrysalis attached to the upended cooler by my garage, which is right near the butterfly bush I planted for the other monarch caterpillars that graced us with their presence before moving on to whatever secret place they chose to attach themselves. I’m hoping to capture it as it emerges, whenever that happens to be, and I have the plant cam set up on it.

My dreams have been invaded by images of paintings I’ve never seen hanging in galleries I’ve never visited (or heard of). My subconscious is probably trying to tell me something.

My puppy had to have the top part of one of his (non weight-bearing) toes amputated because he tore the nailbed right away from the bone on a ball-fetching excursion. It’s sad to me that he was in pain, but good that he’ll heal just fine and he’ll be right back to his duties.

The bees have been ordered, and should ship to us in May. We’ll be able to put these things to good use.

Most of this will be gone from the new barn when spring arrives, as they’ll be set up as homes for the three packages of bees (and queens) we’ll be receiving. Everyone is pretty excited about this, including me, and I’m looking forward to spring even more than usual.

Seeds for the new year were ordered and have arrived (mostly), and the next two weeks will be seed starting time in the small barn, under the lights – which I need to rerig for the pulley system I came up with to make things easier to wrangle under them. As with years past, we’ll be attempting a good variety of tomatoes to see what we like, or is we can just get any to maturity and get a harvest. This year will be better planned than previous years, to be sure.

The garlic went into the frames in late October, and is doing wonderfully thus far. By my estimate, I planted out over 2000 individual cloves this year, which will give us plenty to use and some to save as seed for next year’s planting season, I expect. I’m hoping that we’ll be able to sell some as well, since this is not the usual garlic found in grocery stores.

Here’s hoping the new year will be better than the previous years. Be sage, be happy.