Saturday, September 27, 2008

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

repairs to greenhouse windows

The south facing windows of the greenhouse courtyard are glazed the old-fashioned way. Single panes of glass set in wood sash and secured with painted oil-based putty. Over time and exposure to the elements the putty dries out and, with seasonal movement of the wooden sash and penetration by moisture, begins to fall out in large chunks. As the wood is being re-oiled, I am replacing the faulty glazing putty as we go. Here, upon close inspection, you can see the areas around the glass that are white fresh putty (which must cure in-place before painting). This is an arcane skill that I learned years ago, and relearned hours ago, and which will slowly disappear like a lost language as aging wood windows wither and wane. These windows will be among the last to wane, being constructed of red gum eucalyptus and re-oiled every 18-24 months. Click on the image for a close inspection.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

The path is complete; it remains to travel it...

As the sun sets, the finishing touches are applied and the granite path is done.  A milestone, no pun intended(well maybe a little), has been reached. 

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Other cycles around us

The sun and the moon, and the watery earth.

the state of the garden

We're lucky we aren't dependent on eekking out a living growing our own food.  We'd be very hungry, & no time to tell anyone about it. 

Making the earth

Compost, really.  We empty the bin contents onto the screen over the wheelbarrow, sift, and voila!  we've added value to our garbage!  We then add value to our garden soil, and then to our diet, and the cycle repeats.

Phryganidia californica

I know, it sounds bad, but it's just little 'caterpillas'.  They eat Quercus agrifolia, otherwise known as coast live oak.  We had an outbreak a few months ago and they were making pests of themselves by bungy jumping out of the trees onto us and our guests.  So I had 'em sprayed with an eco-friendly concoction made from rosemary and peppermint oil.  Smelled really good!  And works!  We are having another outbreak on some Quercus agrifolia that weren't sprayed the first time.  I wanted to get some o' dat good-smellin' stuff (Eco-trol) but it's too 'spensive, so I'm trying a different tactic: biological warfare.  Bacillus thuringiensis kurstaki.  It's a little germ that dines on caterpillar juice, and is available at the local garden store.  We'll know if it works in a day or two. 

Monday, September 1, 2008

Making our way up the path

This haul of rock weighed in at 205 pounds, roughly a tenth of a ton. Based on that I estimate I've moved at least 7 tons so far, not counting mortar and other materiel, on this project. When I get to 15, I could say, "another day older and deeper in debt". But only in debt of gratitude.