Summer Vacation Begins

6/21:  The first official day of summer vacation!  The day started out looking promising – big, puffy, white clouds and blue skies.  It clouded up around noon and stayed thickly cloudy the rest of the day.  The good news is no rain, although I find it a little sad that thick, grey clouds are now considered a good weather day in Portland.

I pruned back the tomatoes, pulling out the sprouts that formed at the leaf junctions and taking off the lower leaves that were in contact with the soil.  I also pulled out the bolted spinach and the lettuce that had too many slugs (yuck).  I’ll plant some more seeds of spinach tomorrow and moved eight of the lettuce starts into the area that I cleared out the old stuff.

The chickens need to be processed soon – they are getting huge and a bit messy.

I also bottled the rhubarb wine that I made last summer ( I know, it should have been done long ago).  I didn’t have any corks though so I temporarily capped the bottles with saran wrap and rubber bands.  I’ll stop at the wine store today to get some more corks.  I also started some grape wine using some grape juice that I made last fall.  I had tried the method where you put grapes in a jar, add sugar and hot water and can it.  It was way too sweet and nobody really liked it so I threw it all into a carboy and I’ll get a little yeast today too.  Experimenting is always fun.

6/22:  No rain today.  I was able to finish mowing the backyard and take care of triming the Emperor Oak and a Snowflake Hemlock so we could walk around.  I also cut back the sorrell that had bolted and trim out some swiss chard.

I decided to forego weed-eating today as something small bit me yesterday and left a huge welt – about 2 inches across.  I don’t know what these tiny things are, but they have gotten me in the past and my elbow swelled up so big that I couldn’t bend it all of the way.  I never see them, but it feels like I bumped a thistle.  A sharp prick that sometimes bleeds.  I hate the little things.

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