No, not that kind! LOL!
Spent the day working on the garden, it's ready to be planted. The strawberry plants are looking pretty good, they looked a bit sad for a couple of days, still might lose a few, but the majority of them are looking great and are perking back up nicely. PB got the water system for the garden back up and running. It consists of a homemade water barrel next to the skycastle, the rain from the roof collects in there, next it is gravity fed into another barrel half way between the skycastle and the garden. There is a black poly pipe coming from that, it goes down to the garden, snakes through the top of the fencing and hangs over the center of the garden. There is a valve on the end of the black poly pipe, that goes into a regular garden hose with a shower attachment on the end. I can water everywhere in my garden with that set-up.
Today, I spent the day collecting the dead, waist high grass that grows in clumps around here. I use the dead grass as a mulch. Last year, I harvested it by grabbing a big clump with my hand and cutting as close to the base as possible. It was hard work, my back often reminded me of that fact, and I ran the risk of grabbing something nasty with my hands, cactus or snakes. Today I figured out a better way of harvesting the grass. I took a hard rake, (not the kind you rake leaves with), I would take the head, push it into the base of the grass clump, give it a slight sideways move, then pull back, that would break off the dead grass, leaving the living grass behind, the grass would come off in neat clumps that I could stack beside me. Next I stacked it on a strap that was on the ground. When I had all the grass I could get from a particular area, I would use the strap to hold the grass bundle and carried it to the garden. I thought of those pictures I have seen in National Geographic of old ladies, all hunched over carrying huge bundles of grass or sticks, bigger than they were.
I did two big bundles of grass this way and had enough straw/grass to cover 2/3 of the garden with about a 3 to 4 inch covering of mulch. One or two more bundles like those and I'll be done. It went lots faster using this method. I learned a couple of things, don't step backward while doing this on a cholla infested, rocky slope, and don't harvest any grass that is growing near cactus, especially the cholla, that is very nasty stuff, the spines are just as likely to be on the ground as they are on the plant, it is not worth the pain if I rake up cholla spines with the grass. I was lucky, no twisted or impaled ankles.
We have strange trees here, most trees turn colors and drop their leaves in the fall, not our trees, our oaks keep their leaves all winter long, only in spring do their leaves turn yellow, gold and orange then fall from the trees. It gives the appearance that the trees are dying, but it's a rite of spring. The nice thing about that is I get to rake up all those leaves to use in the garden to amend the soil and to use as mulch.
This evening, I had to walk down to my neighbor's house after dark, I had a half gallon of milk that needed to go into the fridge, it wasn't going to be cold enough tonight to keep it here, and we had a mostly overcast day so not much charging for the batteries. The trip down and back went without incident. Going back up the steps to the skycastle, I noticed a box on the steps that needed to be tended to. It contained spices and herbs, I needed to pick out what I wanted to keep and what needed to be tossed out. So I was halfway up the steps, in the dark, using a tiny LED flashlight when I heard something on the ground behind me.
Shuffle, shuffle, crunch, crunch...
I turned to look and saw a half grown skunk eating some leftover dog food. I immediately started up the steps, the skunk turned and pointed the business end toward me, fortunately it didn't go off! I stayed on the top step while the skunk ate the remainder of the dog food, I waited until it was finished and had decided there was nothing else good to eat and went on its way, then I went back down the steps, collected the bottles I wanted and zipped back into the skycastle. They are pretty cute, especially when they are not fully grown, but cute or not, they are still quite capable of causing a stink if they want to. I'll have to start being more careful when I walk around at night, with the warmer temps, there will be more critters walking around too.
Need to explain why I left dog food outside at night. No, I don't have an outside dog, my baby stays inside where it's safe. A few days ago, we were adopted by a stray cat, no collar so I don't know who it belongs to, but whoever it belongs to, the cat likes our place better, so I guess we have a cat now. It is a nice looking cat, full grown, looks well fed, is pretty friendly, and it is very vocal. We have had other cats come and go, eventually they move on, or go back home, not this one, it sits outside and meows insistently until one of us goes outside with a hand full of dog food. This evening, I didn't get the food out until late in the day. The cat didn't eat all of the food, so that was what attracted the skunk.
New rule, feed the cat during the day, remove left over food, or throw it far behind the skycastle. No more food outside at night.
I named the cat Kiki, that's what I say to the cat when I go outside, it's short for kitty kitty kitty, it comes out kee kee kee, so that's the cat's name, KiKi.
All written text and audio podcasts from this blog are copyrighted and owned by Wretha unless otherwise stated. All rights reserved, You may download or copy for your own personal enjoyment, but please do not distribute (text or audio) without written permission. You may post a portion of this (or any) message from this blog on another site as long as you include a link back to this site and the original message.
properly pronounced wreetha, (included for the text reader),
Thanks for visiting!