Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Projects Many and Varied

Getting the garden beds ready.  I always have such good intentions and big ambitions.  The garden beds look so nice this time of year all empty and ready for planting.  Things generally go downhill from here.  Maybe I should just stick with growing Border Collies, they seem to do well in this soil...

I decided to close in the wood shed. 

I got the lumber from the sawmill in the next village and they brought it over to me on Friday afternoon.

It will cut down on air circulation, but do better at keeping snow out in the winter.  The lumber is very green and is going to shrink like crazy so the air flow will improve.

If it ends up being an issue, I can take down every other board.  I don't think it will matter though, snow is a lot harder to burn than wet wood.

After a brief stop at Riding Buddy's for some holiday BBQ, I stopped over to Farm Buddy's place because we were going to castrate the lambs and a bull calf that was born last week only to find we didn't have the proper tool.  It had been loaned out and forgotten.  We sat on the porch for a minute contemplating the situation and staring at the poor quince bush that the rabbits decimated this winter.

They chewed almost every stalk.  Its got a ton of new growth coming in and I mentioned that we ought to just cut all the dead stuff away and see if it recovers.  So, out came the pruners.

We were rather ruthless about it and it looks rather decrepit, but I think it will come back better without have to fight through all the deadwood.

The puppies had fun at least.

Then there is this little project that I started last week....

When I first built the house, I covered this area with periwinkle, hoping it would just take over the whole bank.  The periwinkle is doing well, but the weeds still do better.  A few years ago, I put down landscape fabric and mulch all around the periwinkle, hoping to smother the weeds.  No such luck.

I've thought a lot about what I could plant here that would actually survive and not end up being a mass of weeds.  After due consideration I decided that the one thing that I have available in great abundance that I know will thrive here without any help form me are rocks.

There is a lot to be said for planting rocks.  They won't get eaten by deer, moles or bugs.  They are both drought and flood resistant and are extremely hardy in all climates.  Rocks are generally very well behaved and I only hate them when I have to try to dig holes.  They just sit quietly, obeying the laws of gravity and minding their own business.  Since I grow rocks better than any other crop, they seem a natural fit.

The hard part is finding rocks that big enough to do some good while small enough that I can actually move them by hand without killing myself or exhausting my vocabulary of swear words.  

I estimate that I only need about 4000 more rocks and another five years to finish this little project.  


  1. that's a lot of labour! I agree that you should be fine with the circulation as the wood shrinks. The mice will appreciate it as a place to winter as well. :)

    I have given up on my weeds- when we moved in the gardens were pretty far gone. I've tried to beat back the weeds but have decided that it's impossible. I need another plan... and about 5 weeks vacation...

  2. Here in the desert, I depend on rockscaping a lot. Large rocks are placed next to and around flowers in order to conserve water from the drip irrigation. It is always damp under the rocks and the plants roots have a place to go. Rock walls. Rock sidewalks. Rock piles.

  3. Okay, please tell us about Conor's blue Teddy toy :-)

  4. Is that teddy a stand in for his mummy? It's humorous that it's with him so much - especially since he's such a shark and so independent.

  5. I read this entire post with a big grin on my face; I love your writing style! Rocks are certainly a good thing to plant this time of year (well, any time of year....). Rocks do very well here in the cool, sometimes damp environment in Oregon as well. Best of luck with your ongoing projects. Warm Regards, Lisa in Oregon

  6. My goodness, you do sooooooo much! I am thoroughly impressed!!! I'm considering planting rocks also. Been weeding for weeks, ugg. love your postings :-)