Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Outside Mostly

The ceanothus bloomed at least a month ago... no, longer than that. It was such a gift to see those familiar flowers of our California foothills. I miss long drives to the mountains, or just to the feed-store, and seeing the hills and roadsides blue with countless blossoms. I felt fortunate to have a personal sample of the rite of spring. And now? Now a second wave of flowers! I had no idea that this could happens and it's making me so cheered.

Geoff and I cannot recall when we ordered a half cord of fire wood. It could have been seven years ago. Half a cord is a lot, and it has lasted us a very long time. We enjoy making fires outside, gathering with friends, keeping mosquitos at bay. Now, with our outdoor screen in the driveway, we host social distance movie nights, and we make two fires. Alex calculated we had about two more Drive Way Theater nights of wood left. So, Geoff called the company we ordered from so long ago... fortunately, they still had us on file, and we must be the only people ordering firewood, because they delivered within the hour!

Oak and piñon. It smells so good, especially the piñon. William, Maria, Bambi, Alex and I stacked it all... no small feat! We swept up the smaller pieces and dropped those in a bucket for kindling. Will this last seven years? Maybe. I remember when we got our first order, I imagined all of the good times in store for us, when we would share warmth and laughter with our friends. Now, we have more to look forward to, and that is a comforting vision.

We grew radish. We have added radish to salads. I am glad it's mild, because its peppery flavor has never been a favorite for me. Can you guess who thinks all of the radish, spiny stems, coarse leaves, and peppery root, is delicious? All the radish tops go to Tasha and Ada.

Now that I know how to load video, it's going be a Goat and Chicken Channel, here!

I've been trying to recall the name of this flower. It's blooming so abundantly. It glows! Seriously, when it's dusk, the light is fading, the flowers in the barrel are luminous and bright. I started to think, I'll just call them "sunflowers" then I laughed at how original my idea was. Well, it turns out they are sunflowers! They are a Coreopsis, and in the language of flowers, Coreopsis means to be always cheerful. I would love to send you an armful.

May 15, and here are the Chiclets. They are nine weeks old! In the back is Puanani, and the two Australorps in front are Maya and Ventura. The copper, is Penelope, and the calico is Lucia, both Ameraucana. There was a time when I was strongly concerned that Maya and Ventura could be roosters, but... I take it back. Lucia, though, she has a pretty fancy tail. Still, nothing definitive enough, and I think we may have got lucky. We just might have five little pullets.

She has an up-do.

Four years ago, we planted Spoon Tomatoes, the tomatoes so tiny you can fit a mouthful on a spoon, and I haven't always been pleased about them. For one thing, they spread all over our yard. And they are a hassle to harvest, so we will never see the end of these tiny fruit on rambling vines. But, now, when we count on deliveries for groceries and forage the yard for fresh produce, the spoon tomatoes have been a welcome treat to add to guacamole, sprinkle over pasta, put in omelettes. However much trouble it is to pick them, they are very much appreciated. And! They finally found a good spot to reseed... they are growing up the bamboo. It's as though we have a tomato tree, and I don't have to stoop to harvest them, they stay cleaner, don't get crushed, or gobbled by bunnies, hens.

The potatoes are blooming, another nightshade.

The cilantro is flowering, too. I look forward to those reseeding and growing all over the yard... that will be wonderful. And I'll collect seeds for cooking.

The big bed is a rambling garden, I can see the spring growing season is beginning to wane. I will be sorry to part with carrot flowers and sweet peas.

Why did I get only one blueberry bush? Those little blue treats have been wonderful, and I wish we had more. Next year. I will be sure to make room for 3, 4, or 6.

Like the ceanothus, I noticed the blueberry is blooming, again. Is this typical, or are these the next season's berries, and they're slow to grow, mature? I began to imagine how great it would be if blueberries were in season all year. What if the blueberries bloom and fruit and ripen all year long, and it rains once a week through summer? What if we plant stones and by late fall, a stone wall grows around the garden. By next spring it would be mossy, and home to some frogs, a toad, and weaver beetles. What if we build an airship, for seven, paint it blue and gold? We could take it up the coast, and through river valleys, dropping off bundles of blueberries to all of our friends.

Tasha likes my musings.

Ada, too.

Flowers, and berries, stones, seeds, feathers, pressed leaves and petals, clouds, moss covered walls, and acorns... they stir my imagination.

Seems like we are mostly outside. It's very nice.

And then we come inside, and that's very nice, too.