Monday, July 18, 2011

From November to July in one day

I was all set for another cool July-uary day on the west coast, but mother nature had the last word today. And it was "heat". I have never figured out why exactly I seem to wait until it is 35 degrees in the greenhouse to work in there. I put on my denim shirt, left my hair down and headed out to take the old paint off the last six panes of glass on the roof. First I had to remove the shade cloth. That was a real rigamorale. The old bolts needed to be loosened first. That involved going into Allan's man cave (the garage) and finding the correct tool. What a nightmare. My camera battery is dead, but I'm going to take a picture and rat him out.

The toolbox...blow up for a closer look
Back to the greenhouse. I was out there for about 15 minutes. I came out dripping with sweat and fading fast. It was literally 35 degrees. I needed water, a T-shirt and to put my hair in a ponytail. Much better. Without the shade cloth and paint, it may be too hot for tomatoes and basil? I am thinking I could get some uv tape and just tack the shadecloth up in July and August. I finished up the job and now there are only two panes left with newer paint. Allan painted them with a paint that won't even come off with a scraper. I think I'll leave it for him.

I moved on to the veggie garden. I broke the bale of straw into flakes and started clipping grass and weeds. I underdressed the herbs, the strawberries, pumpkin, tomatoes and rhubarb. Then I spread it about six inches deep in the pathway. There were a lot of flies hanging around the area and it took me awhile to realize there must be manure in the straw. You can't see it, but the flies can smell it. So once I finished for the day, I watered it well to tamp it down and get rid of the dust and manure. The smell of straw is very nostalgic if you have ever spent time on a farm. I did when I was a little girl. My Aunt Francis farm. I remember cooking with her on her woodstove and making sandwiches and coffee for the men in the field harvesting. I love everything about farms.
Update: It wasn't manure on the straw. It is the fish emulsion fertilizer. The flies are loving it!!
This is what a bale of straw looks like
spread six inches deep.
I spent some time the past few 'autumn' days selecting my seeds for next spring. I wasn't totally convinced to use only open-pollinated seeds until I read more about Monsanto and how they control over 40% of the seeds now. I am going to use ONLY OP seeds. I see it as a my duty!

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