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Monday, January 16, 2012

2011 Wrap-up in Pasadena

It's been a while but the garden in Pasadena is doing just fine. We remain self-sufficient vegetable wise as long as we don't have a football team visiting. I was not able to commit time to seeds and seedlings this year and therefore depended on nurseries for plantable seedlings. That worked just fine though some of the unusual plants, e.g. purple cauliflower, were missed. Our compost, enhanced by a friend's chickens, is incredible. I'm starting to put it in the beds now and I can hardly believe how rich and and flowing it is. We're harvesting beets, broccoli, cauliflower, rutabaga and chard now. Mark s experimenting with chard cuttings. We've found that the chard puts out runners, at least in this climate if they are left in the ground long enough. So, we figure that we can make chard grow year round. It's a thought. Given the incredibly growing friendly climate, this is actually possible.

Oh raspberries... We do have a vine growing. I hope we can keep it up to have an arbor over the gardening workbench. Unfortunately, the roots travel and we had raspberry canes in the middle of the tomatoes last summer. Mark was not thrilled. So, I cut them back both above and below ground. We'll see what happens next year.

I've included photos that capture some of the fun we had in 2011. One is the baby squirrel, Mooch. He and his sister came bouncing out of the garden one day last fall. Clearly they were hungry and danced around our feet. So, we captured them and started to nurse them along with milk in an eye dropper. Unfortunately, the female did not survive. She must have had some internal injuries. However, the male, Mooch, stuck it out. He even escaped the box we had him in. He wanted to take up residence behind the washing machine but Kim wouldn't let him. We put out nuts and figs for him and he lived on them for a couple weeks. Then he moved on. Though sometimes, when a squirrel is unusually close or communicative, we think it's Mooch come back to visit.

We harvested only one Hubbard squash. I don't know why the other blooms didn't make it but clearly the one we got was a hero. Mark resorted to a saw to cut it up. We thought that was funny. What would one normally do? But it was the only way we could figure.

Oh, and then in late November we had the amazing windstorm in Pasadena. We lost our tall fishtail palm in the front yard. We learned after its loss how many neighbors enjoyed its prehistoric look. Oh well... things change. The good news is that we're back to getting more sun on the front yard. So, I'll be trying to take advantage of that.

All for now!