Tag: July 2016

a death in the family
sat 2 july 2016

Entry #1 on this page (tagged: july)

A very hard week. Ethel the guinea pig was sick, had several emergency doctor appointments, and surgery. She died 12 hours after surgery.

Ethel was the older of our team of two guinea pigs. When we adopted them from the Humane Society in 2013, they guessed that she was 2 years old, and her companion Lucy was 1 year old. But it was a guess, they had been abandoned in their small cage on the door step of a local veterinary clinic.

Last photo of Ethel the guinea pig

Ethel liked to surround herself with hay! Sometimes she slept in the middle of the pile of hay.

Ethel was the calmer one... Lucy isn't exactly high strung, but she leans in that direction, while Ethel took everything in stide. Ethel was also more willing to climb up into my arms to be lifted out of their house. Lucy requires a obvious treat, and even then she thinks long and hard about being lifted and carried around.

Ha. Such different personalities. They were quite the pair. But now, it's just Lucy.

Garden List
fri 22 july 2016

Entry #2 on this page (tagged: july, )

We had some trouble with the authorities at our Community Garden this spring. They didn't like our gardening style and said they would kick us out at the end of the year. I was desperate to stay, so: SO and I killed most everything in our plot and turned it into a sad dead desert which will hopefully please the powers-that-be.

Honestly, I don't even know if all the hard, depressing work helped at all, or if the decision has already been made. Regardless, I'm excited about our current gardening, and planning for the future, but trying to be able to let it go in the future, if need be.

So, here's the list of what's going on...

  Beets Significant Other picked out a new kind of beet this year: Chiogia. Imagine my surprise when I cut into my first one!

Chiogia Beet sliced

ha! isn't that awesome?

  Butternut Squash A new favorite that we planted for the first time in 2014.

baby Butternut Squashes

  Lemon Cucumbers We've been at the Community Garden for, what? 7 or 8 years? and I've never had too many Lemon Cucumbers! This year I planted 4 lemon cuc plants... and I can't wait for the abundance! We also acquired a freebie Silver Slicer Cucumber, but it was planted pretty late so I don't know if we'll get much from it.

  Garlic Last October we planted both Hard Neck and Soft Neck Garlics. They were both very happy until this spring when the Hard Necks got spots and then died. The Soft Necks got spots, but managed to flower while they were sick. I just let it go... Mostly because I had given up when our Elephant Garlic got destroyed in the spring by an ignorant work crew.

  Dinosaur Kale A freebie... I don't actually like kale so these two plants are going to be ornamental!

  Nasturtium and Edible Flower Mix You can eat the flowers and leaves of Nasturtium, but it's a bit too peppery for me. I just think they're pretty. I only got one plant out of the Flower Mix that lived, so that's disappointing.

borage and Nasturtium

Borage at the top, Nasturtium at the bottom. I don't know what the spike at the left is: need to look it up!

  Peas We planted so many Sugar Snap Peas, transplants and seed sowing, but I only ate a couple handfuls of pods. They were very yummy, but I want more. I don't know why our pea plants don't grow big like everyone else's.

  Tomatoes We've been planting Sun Gold cherry tomatoes for a long time because they are sweet like candy. This year we are also experimenting with a new-to-us, large tomato: Brandywine. Supposed to have a "sweet, rich, slightly spicy flavor". Looking forward to trying it!

  Spaghetti Squash New this year and I'm already obsessed. First transplant was completely eaten by Striped Cucumber Beetles (who totally ignored the actual cucumber plants in our plot!). 2nd transplant was completely eaten by Striped Cucumber Beetles. Apparently I just don't learn, but for the 3rd time around, I got four plants... and they were completely eaten by Striped Cucumber Beetles. For the 4th time, I got three plants and put them under a row cover! They lived! Last week, I set them free from their cover.

row cover in the garden

  Strawberries We've got two very small strawberry patches, and I only got a couple of strawberries this spring. I should figure out what I need to do to get more fruit.

  Sweet Potatoes One of our usuals. Trouble is, at the end of the season when these are ready to dig up, I'm tired of garden food! ha. So I only planted 2 instead of our usual 3.

  Sunflowers and Oregon Sunshine There are more than enough sunflowers at the community garden, but I wanted to add to the abundance! The Oregon Sunshine is a little plant with pretty leaves and yellow flowers. I found out after I planted it, that it's a native of Eastern Oregon, so I didn't hold out much hope for it here in Western Oregon... but we've got a couple blooms after all:

Oregon Sunshine, single bloom

  Zucchini Got a Yellow Zuc this year. It was eaten by the aforementioned Striped Cucumber Beetles, and I got another one to replace it. Except the original plant lived! And so did the replacement! I'm not sure how to handle 2 zucchini plants, since I get tired of zucchini with just one plant every year.

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