Monday, February 21, 2011

Winter Garden Update - In Which I Am Knowingly Duped

As a reasonably long time resident of the Oregon coast I should have a handle on weather patterns right?

We get rain here.

Have you heard about that?

Well it's true...

Our seasonal average is somewhere north of 70 inches...

And I totally try to pretend it's not true...but it is.

BUT fairly often in January we get a spurt of sunshiney awesomeness and in my little pretend world  I'm back in San Diego and Spring has arrived.

It gets me through til spring break when I really do get to be in San Diego.

This year we got bonus sunshiney awesomeness.

Four weeks instead of two.

And we were all gettin our Spring on.

Things started to really look good in the garden.

Cauliflower happiness abounds.

Seriously, we had no idea this was even out there since I don't venture out nearly as much in the rain.

Ooooo ahhhh.

Also I'd like to take a moment to mention that these shots were the first time I got to use my new lens.
My first Big Girl for real glass.
The Nikon 50mm f1.4 G
I think I'm in love.

Purpleness happening too.
Some side shooting broccoli...

And some Purple Cape Cauliflower....

Some definite visual coolness...

The kale is starting to look like a palm trees...which I love.

It goes along with my tropical fantasies.

And while the slugs were having a field day with outer cabbage leaves there is still lot left for fish tacos and Asian salads.
What's up with the slugs this year anyhow??

I have never, ever seen this many.

I'm considering approaching my friend Vanessa about starting a Rent-A-Duck business.

I'm sure the ducks would eat only the slugs and not touch anything else right??

So here's where my Springlike delusions start to cause me some concern...
The plants really think it's Spring ...
When I saw this I sprinted... in slow motion in the movies....

The fruit trees are falling for it.

It's all a big lie and they are totally falling for it.

For the past two years we've gotten about 3 Asian Pears because they fall for the fakey Spring and then the hail hits.

I do love that they seem to be eternal optimists though.

The peach tree too...

Falling for it.
I'm not as worried about that one though since it seems to be able to hold it's own when the real weather returns.

All this sunshiney goodness had me in a gamblin mood.

The row that we covered in plastic last year (you know, the one that caused me much guilt and angst)
Made it super easy to get a row ready to plant.

I'm almost a total convert...still some teensy guilt floating around but I think I can alleviate that with some biodegradable version and run a tester on that.

So I threw caution to the wind and planted carrots, onion, lettuce, spinach and turnips.

And it felt goooood.
I know.

Wild and crazy huh?

Wild seed sowing abandon I tell ya.

The cold snap back in December messed with my greenhouse big time this year.

Arugula, Mache and Sorrel were the only survivors among the seeded greens.

Lettuce, spinach and carrots... not so much.  Not at all really.


The back ups of the outside stuff are lookin great.

I used the sad empty spaces to get a quick crop of radishes in before we need the space to start tomatoes and peppers
And they popped right up.

Which is great because we love radishes but we have a horrible track record with growing them outside.

And since all of my unscientific experiments are....



We never have really figured out quite what the problem is.

Suffice it to say it's not worth wasting seeds on.

So I went happily along with my spring fantasies until Thursday.

When I woke up to this!
Ok so past that far tree line is the ocean people!

It's not supposed to snow here.

I can't drive when it snows.

My inner San Diegan freezes up and panics.

I tried to use that an excuse not to make it to the gym that day.

Rich laughed and reminded me that it was two inches....and I have an all wheel drive vehicle.

So I laced up my sneakers, threw back my shoulders and begged him to have his phone on in case I ended up in a ditch...since had to make it at least 100 feet down the road before there was no snow....

I know.

So remember this?

It became this...

Woot! She gambles....and gets burned.

And this....

Became this....
It's in there....I swear on my flip flops.

And of course the pear tree I tried to persuade to hold off on the blooms...

Felt the sting.

I won't collect pear recipes this year.

The hoops and nets on the blueberry bushes collapsed in despair...

This one got the prize for visual coolness...pun intended.

We have another chilly week ahead and I'll just hang out and see what happens and try to pay attention when I hear my inner voice say "step away from the seed packets".

Keep your bunny slippers close at hand this week,


Friday, February 4, 2011

The Boat In Our Garage

Our garage has an interesting life.

All kinds of strange things have occurred there.

This, I think, may be one of the more interesting things....

Let me introduce you to to the Frankenboat also known as the Hogcatcher....

 It began as an outdoor project boat...

Rescued from neglect and a not quite perfect design.

It had potential.

It had good bones.

But was in need of a whole lotta elbow grease, another trailer and another engine to make it happen.

As the full force of winter set in, the whole outdoor thing lost it's charm and it was decided that if the dream were to come to fruition the bulk of the fiberglassing and mechanical work would need a much warmer home.

Imagine if you will the conversations and engineering that went into getting this puppy in the door.
It involved the removal of "stuff" (my technical term) from the top and the removal of wheels from the trailer.

And let's just say the floor jack became one of the key pieces of this grand scheme.
 And here she sits.

All snug and warm.

As packages arrive from Fiberglass Supply
 Oh wait....
I gotta try that again.

Here she sits.
All snug and dry.
As packages arrive from Fiberglass Supply.

Sorry... I couldn't of those poet and she don't know it moments.

The guys had already begun some of the demolition before it got this uptown spot.

The plan is to add a fish hold and create a wash deck.

And from all the talk I'm hearin about how many fish this boat is gonna catch it better be a whopper of a hold.

Collin (kid #3...the mechanic) helped Rich locate a second boat that they will use for the trailer and the engine.

I'll keep ya posted on how this progresses.

If ya wanna come join in the fun we have plenty of tools laying around here for ya.

Happy Weekend,