Friday, June 09, 2006

Checking my fig trees and other Friday Stuff

I've been away from the homestead for the past five weekends this year and the yard is crying for attention. There is so much to do which I have set aside with all the traveling and this weeknd I'm going to focus on the yard, the grass, the fig trees, the butterfly garden, and maybe even the compost bin! I also have to have the front porch rebuilt but I need to finish paying off the master bath rebuild before I take on another debt!

I put in a load of wash and made coffee. I went out to check the fig trees last night and the crop is good but they seem to be growing more slowly than in years past and are still kind of puny. Too much rain splits the fruit, which was a problem last year. This year I will not have this problem with the fruit. Usually, by mid June they are ready to pick. I have three trees. Two are brown turkey and one is celeste, I believe.

Two are mature and very large and one is still relatively small. I planted them on the south side of my house to get the radiated heat from the brick and on the bermed land for good drainage. But one is too close to the house and is tall but not bushy. I have been meaning to dig it up and replant it but I am sure the roots will give me fits. The biggest tree had to be majorly cut back when Frances came through and the neighbors huge oak fell on my roof and smashed it! The roofers needed to get up close to the roof line to fix it on the south side and the poor turkey fig tree got a haircut!

There is also some kind of animal under the front of the house whch has to be tended to in some reasonably humane way. I can hear him scraping when I am at the computer...

I also checked the butterfly garden and filled the bird feeders which always pleases my resident cardinals. The milkweed is droopy and the old flowers have dropped off and new ones will bud if they get enough water. Of course the lantana is growing like crazy as it does with or without lots of rain! My front yard rosemary is so big that it is extra woody and probably needs a careful pruning which I have never done. I planted it there so neighbors could smell it if they brushed up against it and even pick some for themselves if they felt like it.

My side pond has gotten kind of muddy but the new fish are thriving and I saw them yesterday. I have three. They will probably have babies next year and I can stock my friends ponds again. The front pond was so difficult to manage being so close to the front porch that I dug it up this spring and the rocks are still in my backyard waiting to be made into a new pond. I may map that out this weekend as well.

I intend to cut the grass this weekend and plant calladium bulbs in the front garden around the oaks which I have had in the refrigerator since they went to sale in February. I also have to clean the rest of the leaves out of this garden. Then I may tackle the area where the old pond was which is weedy and very messy. I have to build up the new drainage wall and sod it. My sod from last year didn't do very well I think because it didn't get rooted into the ground too effectively. When I was young my dad used a roller on our sod on Belanger Rd. I just used my feet.

The back yard needs cutting and lots of weeding and I still have to get rid of the poison ivy. The blueberry plants didn't make any fruit this year which was a disappointment. I hope it was just watering but maybe I don't understand how to grow them very well yet. Plants are forgiving and they will often patiently wait until you learn how to care for them properly. My two new pear trees need to be examined and I have to tend them as well. Not sure if I have any pears on them...

I do intend to see "Prairie Home Companion" tonight.....Saturday night is supposed to be a singing session with the girls. I really think the best use of my time on Saturday night will be working with the Boss 532 digital four track to get some tracks recorded and mixed. I just haven't spent enough time with it. I have also intended to find an mp3 site to link to, so some of my music can be more easily shared. Linda and I have been meaning to book studio time. We both have mixing and recording equipment though, but it takes so long for amateurs to make recordings!

I will take some hammock time to finish my latest book and I'll include a list of books I have read lately in my next post. I am sending mom "The Stone Diaries" which I know she will enjoy.

I hope you guys have a productive day and that Jon's first day on the job goes well. Stay well groomed and dress nicely, Nathan. Glad you updated your resume. You need a haircut! I will also send the correspondence from UWF which instructs you as to the issue we discussed last night...

Now on to work!

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