Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Mid-August Week in Photos

 The weather sulked a bit last week--partly over-cast skies brought welcome respite from the intense heat and humidity of July and the earlier August days.
A few showers, all too brief, at least 'laid the dust.'
I pulled out spent vines of cucumber and squash, uprooted the sorry remnants of tomato plants,
and J. turned the soil afresh using both the large tractor-pulled rotavator
and the Troybilt tiller.
Matt and Gina have labored at the garden space being resurrected at their house
and came up to take advantage of a sunnier strip here for a few things.
The late garden is pretty much in place and we have only to weed, water, monitor for insect pests and
hope for autumn weather that will give us a harvest.

J. took this photo Saturday evening when sunset reflected orange against
billowing clouds to the east.
Moments later, as twilight approached, a thunderstorm moved in with a pounding of welcome rain
and pleasant showers during the night.

A cool and misty morning; looking south down the Big Creek Valley.

Payne Janes Hill is wrapped in grey mist which obliterates the view of farm buildings and familiar landmarks.
The ancient pear tree [not fruit-laden this season] stands sentinel over the green and dripping landscape.

Mist rolls along above Big Creek as we sit on the east-facing porch.

The second planting of beans.

We are hovering over the melon vines awaiting the first of the cantalope.
Last year we had them by the wheelbarrow full by the first week of July.
Our early planting this year coincided with a cold and wet spell of weather---no early melons!

Green peppers have been great this year--I've been chopping them for the freezer.

No idea of the variety of grapes. The vine had gone rampant with neglect, even putting out branches which rambled along the top of the ground and then rooted in.
J. experimented on Friday with home made grape juice.

The field corn in the 15 acres J. leased to a neighbor.
It was a late planting due to the cold wet May, but is thriving.

Clusters of elderberries hang in shiny purple-black heads.
I expect I should be manufacturing jelly from them.
An elderly friend in our church during the Vermont years produced a much-anticipated elderberry pie each summer for a pot luck dinner.

Profligate and prolific trumpet vine.
The main vine has clambered up a crabapple tree, rampaged over the wood pile, cast out new plants within
an astonishing radius.

A sunflower sporting rain drops from a shower early on Sunday morning.

Bees hum in the sunflowers.

The 'hot' colors aren't my favorites, but when it comes to sunflowers
nothing is too gaudy.

Although the old apple tree at the edge of the back yard doesn't provide us with fruit,
it creates a welcome circle of shade for Pebbles and her water tub.

J. took this photo after the morning mist 'burned off.'
The sun is capricious today, the air sweet and cool.

Teasel stalks a 'bug" in the cat yard.

The kittens are uproarious at night.
When I shut down my computer and close the door on this room
we hear thumps and bumps as we prepare for bed.
This is the sight which greeted me when I came in this morning with bowls of 'poultry platter'
for the kittens.
Wilbur appears astonished that I don't appreciate his ingenuity with a roll of toilet paper!

Willow has learned that looking pretty has a mitigating effect when one has been a naughty cat!
She sprawls innocently on a bin of the genealogy materials which I've been sorting in odd moments.
The kittens and I say 'thank-you' for commiseration about fleas and suggestions for managing them.
I'm still finding a few on the kittens' tummies when I do a twice daily flea search, but the numbers are declining.  I augmented the Zodiac 'spot treatment' with a very cautious spritz of flea spray in furry armpits.
Brewer's yeast isn't available in our local market [think Wal-Mart--sigh] but I plan to get some on our next trip to the whole foods store.
I think it would be a good nutritional supplement for all the resident felines.


  1. MM.. looks like your adapting to Kentucky and the southern humidity well! XO

  2. Your garden produce puts ours to shame this year. I`m jealous of your outdoor melons and green peppers.

    Willow and the toilet paper made me smile. Such innocence! She is a very pretty kitten with her Birman -like white paws.

  3. Dosen't Pebbles look sleak and well!

  4. What a wonderful photographic journey around the homestead ...those sunflowers are wonderful ...do you harvest the seeds?

    We have a couple of cats who have never outgrown frolics with a toilet roll ...I actually once caught Pheobie running along the hall with an end in her mouth and the paper unrolling behind her. Bless lol

  5. Carol; The 8 weeks of high heat and humidity aren't my favorites, but that leaves a lot of nice weather for the rest of the year.
    Have missed your blog posts!
    DW: Every garden year is slightly different--the pepper yield this summer is encouraging. Now if we can have more success with tomatoes I'll be pleased. Who knew that 'blight' was such an issue? Yes, these little tabbies are ever so handsome!
    Kath: Pebbles has had a good season--her feet have stayed sound and she seems well and content. She is now 21 years old!
    Angie: I should really cut down the sunflower stalks and hang the seed-heads to dry. Last year I simply left them in place and the birds helped themselves.
    I suspect cats are quite universal in their love for unreeling toilet paper!

  6. Your photo's give a really nice view of life 'in retirement' {ha!} and I too am jealous of the bounty from the garden. Seems like you have a wonderful spot there.

    Thanks for the kind comment on mine re our mutual insomnia by the way.

  7. What a lot of vegetables and fruit you have produced. Had to laugh at the kittens' antics!

  8. I loved seeing all of your photos and the green surroundings. It is so brown here and I miss the green of VT. My grass is nice and green but my water bill was $400! When I first moved to CO I couldn't believe that you had to water your grass.
    The toilet paper made me chuckle! My manx leaves all kinds of treats for me outside of our bedroom door during the night. Ponytail holders, barrettes, scraps of paper, etc. She loves to get in the cupboard and get out a whole roll of wrapped toilet paper! There are teeth marks and claw marks all over it. She gets into a lot of trouble.