Upside Down

Today was going to be an scheduled no-yard day as it was supposed to be raining on and off from lunch time. It only rained for a wee while during the day though, so I was a bit put out. It looked like it might rain, maybe (a la winnie the pooh “tut, tut, it looks like rain) so I erred on the side of dry caution and decided to stay indoors!

This plan was stymied this afternoon though, as we had a guy turn up to cut the two troublesome trees down that were damaging the path and, potentially, growing roots under our home (not good.) We weren’t planning to be out lugging tree limbs, but he turned up to take a look and said he could cut them down straight away. And so… it ended up being the opposite of a lazy!

The tree cutting did a fair amount of damage to the vege patch but I think (touch wood) that I may have got them upright on the stakes soon enough. We had more rain tonight which I’m hoping will help rejuvanate the poor bent little guys.

Another byproduct of the tree dooming is that there’s a bunch of neat pieces of wood that I now have to play with. One piece from the bottom of the oak tree that I’m planning to turn into a fairy house thingy, which I would like to use in a little herb garden thingy. I kinda have a visual of what I want it to look like, but I’m unsure of my abilities to carve wood without carving myself, too!

By the time I had de-leaved myself and no longer looked and smelled like a treant, it was too dark to take photos. I’ll post some tomorrow of the mountain of debri that I get to chop up and maybe of the garden if it’s not too sad.

The broccoli and chives seedlings have bit the dust over the last day, I think it’s just been too hot for them. The next seeds I plant, I’ll start indoors and see if that helps. At this point, even if everything in the planter goes splat, I’m not too worried about having to replant. The progress over 3 weeks has been pretty good, so I could just replant everything if needed.

The day was capped off by treating my mum-in-law to a treat for dinner and a bunch of bright flowers. I also tried out a new recipe for a pineapple upside down cake which is her favourite type of cake. I’m hoping the cake turns out well, as it looks pretty on the site I pulled the recipe from. If it works out, I’ll post it to the food part of this site!

 

Potential fairy house.. maybe?

Update: Nope, my bad cake juju continues. It turned out pretty but lied to me when it told me it was cooked through (the toothpick was clean!). When inverted, the middle was uncooked and couldn’t be salvaged. Tomorrow I’ll try again using the same recipe in cupcake form, which is mum-in-law’s preferred cake format anyway.

Cross-stitch & woodchopping

It’s another hot day here again and, while the back path (where the vege garden is) is a little shaded, the back yard where the big jobs get done is too exposed to the sun. It’s probably going to top 100F again today and there’s not a cloud in the sky. I did a little pottering about this morning, but will have to wait until early evening before I consider doing anything else. Sunburn and heatstroke aren’t fun gardening companions!

Yesterday and today, I’ve been doing cross stitch to keep my hands occupied. It’s a four panel piece that’s I’ve been working on for at least a year, maybe even two. It’s not especially large, and I do find it a relaxing pass time, but I also burn out on it pretty quick as there’s not a lot of variation in colours or design on it. When finished (when, not if!) it will be nice to have it framed on the wall of my potential craft room, assuming the space ever gets cleared! One problem I’m having with the embroidery though, is that my eyes are getting worse so I’ve had to resort to taking a photo of segments of the pattern and then zooming in on it. I also had to buy some granny reading glasses at dollar tree to be able to see the stitches, and I imagine that I look something like this when I wear them:

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At the same time as the embroidery, I’ve been playing BDO and working on processing materials in game to make myself a fancy ship to sail in. There’s one thing about BDO that I really like, which is being able to use time away-from-keyboard and be productive. You can do crafting, fishing and horse training while afk so even when you’re off doing other stuff (like gardening outside in the real world) you can make progress in game!

 

No strings attached

Last night I took the guide strings off the planter box. The string that I used wasn’t meant for outsideness and it kept stretching and was starting to look a nasty colour. While I could keep winding it tighter with sticks, or replacing it, it seemed like there ought to be a better alternative now that the planter was full.

I settled on using bamboo since we have so much of it, and it looks a lot better. In between the big plants, I dropped in small stakes to deter digging and left a net over the smaller seedlings until they’re big enough to see. Next time I’ll drop stakes in before I plant, and it’ll be a lot easier.

The cherry tomatoes on the right have really taken off in the last few days, I guess they love that heat we’ve been having. The beans (far left) and doing well with the exception of one very, dead, plant at the bottom left. I was going to transfer a healthy one to that spot to make it all organised, but I think it’s best to leave things be if they’re doing well. Instead, I’ll lift the dead bean and replace it with the rogue pea that I found last week. It won’t be perfecting organised but as long as it’s all growing, that’s what counts.

The little splashes of colour in the photo are the coloured pipe cleaners I’ve been using to hold things on stakes. Red for tomatoes, obviously, and um.. white on the beans and orange on the pea for no reason other than I like those colours.

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It’s a lot cooler today, back down into the early 90s though it’s still very hazy from that swamp fire. I’m hoping we get some good rain and the wind will drop soon.

Here’s the planter just over 2 weeks ago. Yay for things growing! Seeing the comparison like this is making me feel pretty pleased with myself, even though it’s the plants and sunshine doing all the hard work.

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Planter 20170425

Hot stuff!

It got really bloody hot today and it wasn’t until after 7pm that it became a bit less inferno-esque (that’s the technical term.) 104F / 40C is basically the temperature at which I stop operating.. and it’s also the temperature that our AC starts protesting too, unfortunately. Hubby and I ended up going out into the yard and pottering around as it was cooler out there than inside!

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While we didnt get any big jobs done, I did remove the string from the planter and pop in some more stakes of bamboo. The tomatoes are really flourishing at the moment, so I decided to stake them, and tie them losely. I’ve been using fluffy pipecleaners for a few tasks around the garden and they’re quite handy!

More seeds

Had some more seeds arrive through the mail today. I ordered them as an extra on an amazon order  ( I had a few dollars on a gift card that I earned through microsoft rewards) and I wasn’t sure if they were going to get scooped up by customs, or not.

Planted today (from left), Lavender, Basil and Safflower. Everything is still looking a bit sad, but I think part of that is due to the ash that we had falling yesterday and the heat picking up again. I may have to rig up a shade with some of the random crap in the yard before summer hits. The thyme has recently starting pushing up in the planter box, and the slices of tomato that I planted are sprouting too.

I reaaally need to get a second planter down for the tomatoes and get a frame up for the cucumber to climb. I’ve still got plenty of old pre-used lumber to recycle, it’s just a matter of coming up with a plan and carrying it out.

Other jobs to do include making a watering can (so I can dose the plant food) and making some proper plant labels now everything is down. I have a few ideas to try out for both things that will resuse stuff we already have. I am a little tempted though, to get some tiny pots from dollar tree, paint them black with chalkboard paint, and then just label them with chalk. Being able to reuse plant labels seems like it would be a good idea. For the watering can, I’m going to try poking holes in various arrangements/sizes in some old juice bottles and see what happens.

The lawnmower is also in desperate need of attention so I need to do some research on that. New oil, new air filter, new sparkplug, a new diaphragm on the carburettor… and it’s still fouling spark plugs within a few hours. One perk with the lack of rain is that the lawns aren’t yet needing to be mown every week.

Sea Monster Hunting

Last night a group of us went out on the guild galley and did some sea monster hunting! Standing in the crow’s nest of the ship gives a great vantage point for taking screenshots. I didn’t get any last night but here’s a couple from last week that I liked. I’m a bit of a fiend when it comes to getting screenshots, and there’s been many a time where my poor little toon has gone splat for the sake of a pretty picture!

I was testing out the discord overlay which is why it’s displayed on the top image (not using it anymore for that reason.)

A Case of Mistaken IdentiPea

I’m such a noob! What I though was Rosemary turned out to be another Pea popping up. I’m reusing the pots that I had my first batch of seeds in and, I guess, one little pea decided to grow after all it’s siblings had moved on. I think there is actually a teeny, tiny, rosemary seedling though.. but it could just as easily be a weed.

On the left, we have “Not Rosemary” aka Pea.. and on the right, “Maybe Rosemary” aka perhaps a weed.

Something has been digging little holes in the dirt and I can’t tell what’s doing it. Chances are, it’s one of the squirrels or birds in the yard. There’s no moisture or nasty surprises so I don’t think it’s cats. Either way, I’ve added extra stakes between the plants in the hope that it might be too pointy and cause inconvenience for digging critters.

We had a large amount of smoke from the swamp fire yesterday and we were still getting random orange sunshine at times. The windy conditions have been making that fire worse so, hopefully, we get some proper rain soon.