Friday, June 20, 2014

Solstice Eve

Tonight after supper (corn and zucchini tacos), we walked up to the mailboxes to stretch our legs and catch the last light of day.  The fireflies were rising, first around the house and later as it got darker, up out of the pastures.  And as we came back down our drive towards the house, the lightening bugs in the woods started to flash in synchrony.  Enchanting.

It has been brutally hot, everyday this week in the 90's.  Each day as the inevitable thunderstorms build, we eagerly watch the weather radar only to see the storms inexplicably break up and pass around us without dropping any rain.  Frustrating.  The only time its decent to work outside is before 9 AM or after 7 PM.

Despite the dry heat the gardens are looking good and productive.  We have 180 onions curing in the shed, 60 heads of garlic dried, cleaned and ready to store, 20 pounds of potatoes curing under the bed and another 20 pounds yet to be dug from the garden.

This week we started harvesting the first of the beans, squash and cukes and the tomatoes are fattening up.  Beets are getting rounder, carrots longer and broader by the day.
The peas are about finished as are all the spring greens, between the caterpillars and the heat, forcing them to bolt to flower.  I harvested all the kale and spinach wholesale a couple of weeks ago and cooked a bushel down to a couple of pounds for the freezer.  
Beet thinnings, kale and spinach headed for the freezer

I started a new half-time job this week.  Working for the NC Community Garden Partners to organize 5 one-day workshops across the state for community garden leaders over the next 6 months.  Those will be followed by a mini-grant process to award small grants to gardens for things like bee hives and season extension.  The project is partly funded by the Burt's Bees Greater Good Foundation so there will be a big focus on pollinators and organic pest management.  I will be busy pulling this all together and doing all my other stuff but I am excited for the opportunity and think it will be a worthwhile and fun project.

Still working at Spanish for Fun.  We made these "grow bags" with coffee bags and here I am teaching the kids how to snap a snapdragon.  A lost art I am trying to keep alive.  These kids are a total joy and keep me going even on the hottest of days.

Looking forward to a dip in the creek tomorrow as we head down to conduct our quarterly stream watch in search of macroinvertebrates and other critters.  It will be a good day to get wet.


Carol Henderson said...

Every day is a good day to get wet, in my opinion. And I'm curious about the dying art of snapping a snap dragon. Will you let us know more about this in another post some time? Hope so.
And I hope you got some of the big rain we had over here off South Columbia last night. I slept through it but my hubby said we got a good drenching.

Maria Hitt said...

I agree any day is a good day to get wet when its so hot outside! We got a smidge of rain, enough to make for good weeding and help the plants along, hoping for more today.