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Saturday, July 27, 2013

In high summer

We think of late July as high summer. It's a bit more droughty this year than even last year, as we did expect, and we are having to pay a great deal of attention to the mulch and water.

The potatoes should be lifted soon, as they have attracted the attention of gophers. Tomatoes and beans have set fruit but are not ready to pick. The corn is tasseling out and the pumpkins are greenly growing on the vines.

Risa has been cutting up excess vegetation from around the place and adding it to the compost heaps. She's moving irrigation and deepening mulch. She's also hiding a lot. There have been fourteen days at 90F or higher in this garden in July.

Birds have been trying to talk to Risa whenever she hand waters, so she's built an impromptu bird bath for them.

Last Son and Daughter were here. Last Son chopped and removed a lot of foliage from the creek (dry wash in summer) and Risa is composting it; Daughter will ferry our excess eggs (both duck and chicken) to friends and family in the Big City. She also foraged in the garden for chard, kale, potatoes, beans, cauliflower, and cabbage, as well as in the pantry. This makes us very happy; it's what we're here for.

Outside cookery, given the weather, has been a must. Pickled beets, beans, bread, chicken (the rooster, if you must know), potatoes, pasta, tea ...

Once a day, it behooves us to go, basket in hand, on a voyage of discovery. One of the ducks is a bit off her head, makes nests as far away as possible, and invites all the other ducks to contribute to her nest. We find it, and she follows us all the way back to the gate, complaining. But, hey! No drakes, no ducklings.

The last raspberries have been picked and the first blackberries. Geese fly over, talking among themselves of gleaning and rivers.

Turnips dehydrating
Solar tea
Garlic hardening off by a spud tub

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