Under the Nut Tree
On a day like today with temperatures in the 90s, the best place to sit in the vineyard/garden is under the Filbert tree. It’s relatively cool and shady. And if you are some kind of a nut, like me, you will feel right at home.
Cheryl under the nut tree with Gretchen the dog to the right and Gray-C our cat (barely visible) on the ground to her left. In back are potted grape plants, a remay house for Kale and Cabbage and a greenhouse for tomatoes and peppers.
From under the nut tree you can see flowers in the garden. These daises are still in bloom with some day lilies next to them. It’s been a good year for flowers so this caption is linked to an album of flowers.
I originally thought that I should stop listing all the things that went on since the last blog in the current blog, my journal entries are basically just a rehash of the things I checked off my to-do list each day. Instead I planned to write a snapshot post about the vineyard today and sat down under the nut tree just to take it all in. It didn’t take long to realize sitting there that I was just checking off another thing on my to-do list even though technically I wasn’t doing much. Another hazard of this approach is that I can’t really sit in the vineyard looking around without mentally adding lots more stuff to my to-do list. So I settled on a kind of hybrid approach, just posting pictures and blabbing on a little about each one.
You may notice that a lot of pictures of vineyards catch them at close to this stage in early June when the leaves are coming on, the grass is mowed and all of the suckers and extra leaves have been removed.
What you don’t usually see is this stage in July when the new canes are going crazy and just about touching each other across the aisle, the grass is either out of hand or dying back and there are lots of new shoots filling in where you so meticulously removed them a month or two before. But really, this is good. The vines are happy. The grapes are about the size of marbles and the bird whose nest was in the plant on the left has already raised it’s young and flown away.
Okay, not the greatest picture, but this is a feral cat that has moved into the vineyard and is very shy. We named it (Orange) Julius. For some reason it (he/she ?) seems to get along with our cat, Gray-C so all is well on that front.
On a not-as-fun note. I believe this is Rocky, a squirrel that spent the winter in the walls of our shop. Gray-c brought it in as present – or just to show off – and dropped it on the rug in front of the wood heating stove. We threw them both out. On the up side, all the pine squirrels have disappeared and we expect to collect filberts from the nut tree for a change since a young squirrel ate all of them while they were still green last year.
While we are still on critters, here is a bumble bee on a grape leaf. Don’t ask me what kind of bee or grape. We have lots of bees working overtime on this year’s flowers.
On the critter list is this tree frog taking a dip in the dog’s water bowl.
The harvest has begun. This is just one bunch of many kinds of garlic Cheryl grew.
Truthfully we don’t know what kind of squash this will be. It started from compost that we mixed into this garden bed and is rapidly taking over the world. I would need a series of drone shots to keep track of its progress.
I usually go on a hike with my daughter, April, around Fathers Day. This year we included James Houston, age 7, on an arduous climb to the Bubble Dome, seen in the cliff behind them. We all held up in good shape. There is another album of the hike linked to this caption.
Speaking of daughters.. My oldest, Bina, is moving with her family out of an apartment in Alameda onto a 62 foot sailboat, Imagination, anchored in San Francisco Bay. As part of her paring down of possessions, she sent us an Instant Pot, a high-tech pressure cooker that I had never heard of. This was the first meal from it, short ribs, sauteed and pressure-cooked in the Instant Pot and then grilled on the BBQ. Which reminds me that is is almost time for dinner and this post can wait for now.