Pages

Saturday, 3 June 2017

June 2nd, beautiful June

June really is the best month. Birds are in full force, flowers are just starting to bloom, plants are lush and green, the heat (usually) is just right.

Today started off well. I attended the Fireman's Breakfast, a fund raiser in our little village. My daughter was there as part of her job with the Fun Squad at the radio station. $10.00 bought me a breakfast I couldn't possibly finish and all money going to a good cause, I am sure. I got to visit a bit with my neighbours and a colleague who has since retired and is loving it.

Remember when I wrote last Sunday about a good kind of tired after a day of bending and squatting and kneeling and walking? (No? You don't hang on my every word??) Anyway, the result of that is a partially weeded flower bed and a wrecked knee. I can't believe I have injured myself somehow in just one day. Now I am very hesitant to do anything that requires squatting or kneeling (yes, I did use a kneeling pad). This would never have been an issue 15 years ago. So my flower beds taunt me. Maybe if I got a low stool to sit on?

Since my fuschias hanging on the porch have been attracting so many hummingbirds, I thought it was probably time to get out my hummingbird feeder and make some syrup to put in it. As I was getting out the bag of white sugar, I honestly had this thought that maybe I should cut back on sugar for the hummingbirds, that I shouldn't be so liberal in my bird sugar consumption! Like the metabolism of something that flies so quickly its wings are a blur has to worry about weight gain! I've always read and heard that a three to one ratio for hummingbird syrup (at least the first bottle, to attract them) is good. I do not use red food colouring, as used to be the practise. The bottle that I use is red glass.


After rototilling my vegetable garden a while back, life got busy, temperatures got colder, and the rain came down. So I have yet to put a single vegetable seed, or seed potato in the ground. I have one tomato plant and one cucumber plant that I purchased at another fund raiser sitting on the back deck, patiently waiting. So, I got out my basket of seeds.


I'll have a look and see if any of them are viable for this year. Do you use seed packets for more than one year? Or do you buy fresh every year? I never use all of my seeds each year, so usually have leftovers. I buy tomato plants, rather than starting them from seed, although some years, I replant rogue tomato plants that have sprouted up from the compost, or in the garden itself.

I'll figure out what I need for this year and buy some things this weekend.

So, we definitely have a raccoon. Not just one raccoon, but mama and babies. They live in the big old spruce tree. It is right outside our bedroom window so there have been evenings that I have heard her reading them a bedtime story!! (If I could understand raccoon, I'm sure that's what it is!)


Twice now, I have walked out onto the porch, look up when I hear a scratchy sound, and see mom descending the tree. This has been in the middle of the day, as well as the morning. Aren't they supposed to be nocturnal?? She runs away when I make the universal "get out of here, wild animal" hissy sound. She is BIG, by the way. We really need to trap and relocate her, but we can't do that until babies are out doing their thing, so we can get everyone. We don't want to be responsible for taking away a mother with babies still depending on her. As I've said before, raccoons are incredibly destructive. At a more nuisance level, they tip over my water buckets, rip down my bird feeders, and make muddy pawprints all over the cement pool deck. They have also been known to take up residence in people's attics and create all kinds of problems in homes, sheds, or garages.

Does anyone out there have a good trimmer / whipper snipper? My reliable one bit the dust today. The inner mechanisms have cracked and it chewed up and spit out the last of its plastic cord. We have a gas operated one, but it is way too heavy for me and we don't have the shoulder strap for it. I did have an electric one, but our property is one acre, and so playing with extension cords (three attached together!) is ridiculous and just makes me mad before I even begin, as well, the cord kept popping out of the machine itself.

With the amount of rain, and (I hope) heat, our property will be a jungle if it is not kept trimmed. My husband said, I hope jokingly, that he would buy me a new one for my birthday. Don't you dare!

I shall leave you with this June iris from my garden.

30 comments:

  1. Jenn, you have my sympathy with your knee injury. I was planting around yesterday and I squat down on my heels and that just kills my ankles. So today I am limping around. Bummer. We honestly have many varmints running around...to the point my husband is refusing to put any more bird seed out back. I am still feeding the finches and hummingbirds. We have rabbits, squirrels and chipmucks...we must have a raccoon too..because somethin keeps setting off the life trap. I wish I had about 6 cats around here. But then the coyotes would have them for snacks. :( Take care of your knee honey. Blessings, xoxo, Susie

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Awww, thanks Susie, you are always so sweet. I love finches, but I know a finch feeder would just get ripped down, too. Raccoons are hard to catch with a live trap. They are so skilled at getting the food without getting caught. Sorry to hear that you are limping along, as well. Hope it doesn't last long.

      Delete
  2. That Iris photo is amazing. Don't laugh but I asked for a strimmer for my birthday before last. It's runs off a rechargeable battery and is just enough for me to strim my rockery and a few other bits. Wouldn't be enough for your garden. Paul uses the big machine to do the rest of our place, I can't even lift it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The one that just died ran off of rechargeable batteries. That was fine, because I would trim until the battery power ran out and I didn't end up with a sore back. But the mechanism is pooched inside, so I will need a new one. I would like one that has something different than a plastic line that breaks off for cutting down weeds and grass.

      Delete
  3. Can't remember the last time I kneeled or squatted. I have to sit on my butt and scoot around in the garden.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I do a bit of that, too. I find that I have to shift and change positions while gardening frequently.

      Delete
  4. Protect my knees is my number one priority at my age - forget the weeds if necessary.
    Isn't that iris magnificent?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, irises are wonderful. I'm always tempted to purchase new colours that I don't have and then I remember that I'm trying to reduce my gardening, not increase it!

      Delete
  5. My knees always complain after I've worked in the garden. We've been visited by raccoons lately, they're cute, but messy. What I can't stand is the opossum who's started showing up, ugly and he digs up the yard

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There never were opossums around where I lived. Now, they are seen more often. Not particularly pretty animals, are they?

      Delete
  6. I also use a three to one humming bird recipe. You might try E-bay for a trimmer replacement, however it is probably best if you buy one off the shelf as it gives you a chance to feel the weight and balance. As for as the raccoons, they are not only destructive, but also prone to rabies and can be aggressive if cornered or just pissed off - be careful.
    the Ol'Buzzard

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh yes, we are familiar with raccoon behaviours. This particular raccoon is just raising her brood and doing her own thing, but we had have had others, likely males, who haven't run away and been quite bold. Our cats get their rabies shots.

      Delete
  7. Believe it or not, possums are a very valuable animal - they actually EAT TICKS! Which are horrible around here this year. Take care of that knee!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I didn't know that about possums. I think that guinea fowl also eat ticks.

      Delete
  8. I think it will be fun to watch the baby racoons. They are destructive. They raise havoc with my birdfeeders. Sounds like you have been busy. I hope you get your garden in.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I don't think I've seen a raccoon in person for a long time

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wow, I know that we have them in our towns and cities as well.

      Delete
  10. Your irises are beautiful -- that's a favorite flower of mine and these purple ones are fabulous.

    Lizzie had a raccoon encounter last week. I heard noise on the family room window so I went out and there was this little masked face that had climbed up the bird feeder and was looking in. Lizzie was freaked and fascinated. I was worried it would climb down my chimney (the cover fell off in a windstorm). So far, so good. I've had raccoons before -- they can be ugly!

    No trimmer recommendations. And oh, I'm so sorry about your knee. Might it have been somethng more than just the kneeling? Either way, it hurts and I hope it feels better soon.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nobody wants a raccoon coming down their chimney! I'm glad your cat didn't get too involved with the critter.

      Delete
  11. Oh, those injuries...as we get older! I can definitely relate to this with my recent injuries to chest muscles. My knees have gotten weaker over the years, too. I try not to bend or kneel more than necessary but it can't always be avoided. I hope you heal quickly and completely!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I actually went out and bought a small plastic stool that I can take out to whatever garden I'm working in, so I can sit instead of kneel or squat. Lord, I sound old.

      Delete
  12. Oh your poor aching knees. Such an amazing joint which can be magnificent when working correctly but oh so painful when not. I will be bold here & suggest that if you knee continues to grieve you, maybe have a physio therapist check it out before it becomes chronic. I'll say no more. Your iris are beautiful, mine are still tight buds but hoping by Tuesday they will be out. ... Mary-Lou

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, I'm not adverse to seeing a physiotherapist, and have done for a variety of things over the years. Thankfully, our health plan pays for quite a few visits, so I may end up doing that.

      Delete
  13. Growing up there was a raccoon and babies in our one tree and I used to love going outside and making clicking noises because her head would pop out followed by 4 babies.
    XO Ellen from Ask Away
    www.askawayblog.com

    ReplyDelete
  14. My fella is in the business of repairing things with small engines, lawn mowers, snow blowers, ATVs, and Yes, those horrible weed trimmer things. He hates working on them and thinks they are all poorly made pieces of junk, even the expensive ones. Now isn't that a horror story? I myself use heavy duty scissors to do my trimming....now that my weed thingies have all made their way into the recyclers truck. It takes about a week to do it all, but I haul out my little stool and go to 'er.

    ReplyDelete
  15. I am with you on the knee thing. I am thinking about getting one of those little cart-seats on wheels for zipping around my raised beds. I can still get down, but it's the getting-up that is more and more difficult. I love your hummingbird feeder! I have been trying to find one that is not plastic and haven't found anything I like.

    ReplyDelete
  16. I have a great cordless electric trimmer by WORX - and I have about 2 acres, but it does a great job!!

    ReplyDelete
  17. Knees! Hmmmph! I went out one morning for just a half hour of doing battle with the dandelions and was so pleased that I'd managed to not wreck my knees that I went out the next three mornings as well. After the fourth session, my knees were killing me, and I don't think they've been the same since. Might just have to let them win!

    ReplyDelete
  18. SO sorry to hear about your knee. I hope it heals quickly. And that is about the prettiest iris I've ever seen. :)

    ReplyDelete