September 2nd, 2020


(cats, critter watch, dawg, garden, mom and caa)

I am watching the weather with bated breath: could the long weekend actually have low humidity? Dew points in the 60s? Even a dew point of 60°F? Today the humidity adds another 12°F to the temperature for the heat index.

There is a ripening fig on the fig tree. I am so tickled. And so many little baby figs. I ponder for this year, recognizing how busy i was at frost last year with the last of the tomatoes, the hibiscus. This master gardener page suggests thinning figs in Sonoma; doing so myself would make green fig preserves a reasonable thing to do early. Anyhow, a ripe fig! (And, as i am taking forever to post this -- it was very ripe whien i picked it tonight (Wednesday). i gently pulled it in half and ate it. Very mild -- i think the wet weather caused it to be softer and less flavorful than i would have expected. Still: yay! Yum!)

The runner beans took in a few places along the orchard fence: i hope that those thrive next year. I had imagined i would also have them in the garden, but it seems they never quite made it this cool year. Other pole beans are just now blossoming, so maybe i'll have some beans yet. The most exciting bean news is the wild kidney bean, Phaseolus polystachios, native and perennial, has taken hold at the north end of the area where the sunchokes grow, undeterred by any chemical warfare (allelopathic effects) of Helianthus tuberosus.

The rain on Monday night knocked some of the sunchokes down, but a large Argiope aurantia guards the stand. Wikipedia validates my wariness. Apparently the bite is like a bee sting. If i wasn't irrationally afraid of spiders, i think i would admire these. I am trying to desensitize, but but but.

The little corner of native perennials is rounded out with some sochan, Rudbeckia laciniata. It's lovely forest wildflower, that grows large and tall like the sunchokes and other aster flowers, but the greens in the spring are the edible crop. I've some plants that have started inside the orchard that i want to move out as part of the Fight The Stilt Grass project. Apparently its not favored by deer, so perhaps some day all the plants will be moved out of the protected part of the garden.

I'm imagining making a trellis from the two twin bed springs of out old bed. Last weekend i calculated the angle i would need for good sun (our north slope property makes me so very aware of the angle of the sun) and the height of the supports. I'll need to survey the slope and add the fall of the ground to the height. I'm not sure how ugly the propped up end of the trellis would be as one approaches the house: a wall of sochan would be pleasant for almost half the year, and i think they could cope with the shade of the trellis.

I remembered my mother's birthday with plenty of time to mail order a dress for her: hopefully the higher quality will be something she can enjoy. She did not commonly wear dresses, and so her new invalid wardrobe of easy to put on pull over knit dresses tends towards the inexpensive and flimsy. She knew quality, through her sharp years, always buying classic items as they went on deep sale. I believe part of her distaste for these clothes is not just that they are dresses but also that they are not quality. I hope this sweater dress is something Dad can easily dress her in and that she finds comfortable and attractive.

Meanwhile, confirmation that all the cat messes we need to clean up are not from our diabetic cat Edward but many are from young Marlowe. I suspect there's a significant amount of territoriality playing out. ARGH.

And Carrie has decided she wants to sleep with us. She pants, which i assume is anxiety, but about what? One night we had five of the six of us in the household in the bed, and the one not in it is small Marlowe.
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