Saturday, July 27, 2013

So yeah, about that....

We try and make it a point to keep up an average of four posts a month, and have kept pretty close to it.  Perhaps you've noticed that the ball has been dropped for the last few weeks.  Why the silence?  Because we've been busy enjoying THE GREATEST SUMMER EVER!

It's been hot and dry for months already, whereas it sometimes takes until August to feel like summer around here.  We have ripening tomatoes, for pete's sake!  It's been eighty-something-degrees and sunny all month, and it doesn't look like it's going to change any time soon.  For an in depth description of why our summer here in the upper-left-hand corner is objectively the best in the country, I recommend this super interesting (and very uplifting) blog post.

This has kept us busy for a couple of reasons.  Sunny summers mean all-hands-on-deck for the small restaurant we both work at, which gets overwhelmed by tourists waiting for ferry boats.  On our days off, it's a scramble to keep up with the garden, which is growing at a break-neck pace, food and weeds alike.  On top of that, we've been inundated (happily so) by dinner guests, house guests, neighborly get-togethers, barbecues, family, new friends, old friends and the occasional sing-along.  If you can believe it, we've also found enough time to drop our kayaks in the water.  Phew!  It's a strongly held belief of ours that the only way to not lose your mind in the long, dark, wet winters, is to so throughly exhaust yourself throughout the summer; always doing something, always outside, continually sunburnt and aching; that you long for a cold day next to the wood stove with a book.  We're getting there...

So yes, we have neglected to blog for longer than we intended.  Hopefully you've all been enjoying your own raucous summers and didn't even notice!  You can count on steady updates for now, we've got some big plans in the works.  In the meantime, here are some pictures of the house now that we've gotten further into the nesting phase:

The living room
The bedroom loft

Curtains and sconces
Bedroom and guestroom
Bathroom mirrors

The bathtub
Homegrown dinner
"Still life with log"

Friday, July 5, 2013

Knee High before Fourth of July

As the old adage goes, I think our corn will be fine as it is nearly waist high before fourth of July. I told John that this morning and he came back with " I don't think they had you in mind".  I am thrilled with the growth rate of the plants. We had a really really rainy week recently and it was followed by a week where everyday saw the 80's. You could pretty much stand and watch the plants grow. 

 I have two beds of Tomatoes, this one is about 4 by 10 and grows 10 plants, all heirloom and indeterminate. It turned into a forest this week so I spent the day today clipping the suckers and trimming the leaves . This is something that is really important to do for the health of the plant and for the crop yield, in the Pacific northwest especially. Tomatoes do not like for their leaves to get wet and if you water too hard or a a big rain comes, the water bounces off the dirt wetting the underside of the leaves and making them dirty. This is the cause of tomato blight.  The best way to keep this from happening is to trim the leaves from the bottom portion of the plant.  They end up looking like they got their pants pulled down but better a silly looking plant than a crop that rots.
 This picture illustrates a sucker. Some people go crazy and leave only one lead on the plant and remove every single sucker. You can see a sucker in the picture to the right. There is a little 2 inch growth coming out at a 45 degree angle in the crook of that V. That is a sucker.  If you pinch all but 2 of these you will get a bigger better crop.
Happy Happy Pepper! 

This picture illustrates perfectly that moment with cucumbers where you are very excited and slightly daunted cause you know it is gonna start going fast. These below were the size of my pinkie yesterday.