Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Busted and subsequent catch-up

I've been very excited about my Mum's foray into the cyber world. She's come a long way since that day when I asked her to use the mouse to point at an icon on the screen. She literally picked up the mouse and held it up to the screen opposite the icon. Several years and one very patient computer class teacher (who ought to be canonized) later, and my Mum now has the internet in her own home, which she accesses using a laptop that sporadically cooperates with her.

At least, I was excited about her connecting to the internet, until she got on the phone and asked me had I stopped writing my blog. When I told her no, she informed me that it had been a while since I wrote "in it."

I felt like I hadn't done my homework, or worse, failed some sort of exam.  So Mum, this one's for you!

I have been kind of busy lately, and I've been posting more to my business page, Eco Gardening Coach, on facebook.

I've been getting great satisfaction from seeing my clients newly seeded plants grow. And nearly as much enjoyment out of seeing the likes for my page creep up too. Please feel free to nip over and like the Eco Gardening Coach page.

When I'm not coaching or writing, I get a chance to tend to my own garden. As always, at this time of year in California, Autumn can feel nearly like Spring. The plants are certainly confused.

I've got my spring bulbs starting to come up,
 and sweetpea germinating.
Meanwhile, the slugs are revving up for the start of the rainy season and ready to munch those tender seedlings. I found these slugs eggs under a bale of straw I'd been experimenting with growing tomatoes in. Let's just say the slugs grew better than the tomatoes.

I caught a huge big one about 3 inches long and several inch long "adolescents". Then I found the eggs. They are about half a centimeter long.
The artichoke is still flowering anytime we miss harvesting one.
The Birds of Paradise have begun to blossom having had a brief rest over the hottest part of the summer.
The pomegranate tree is promising big things this year, but none of the fruit trees have yet had any significant color change in their leaves.
The true signs of Autumn coming are the winter squashes. These are three volunteers.
The pumpkins are looking good too.
At the weekends I've been doing some cool things too. We went hiking to Halfmoon Bay and were lucky enough to photograph a juvenile Red-Tailed Hawk eating a newly caught mouse. Imagine telling him to use the mouse to point at anything!

Technically, this is actually a vole, sometimes called a meadow mouse.

This slide show shows him eating the entire thing - it only took a few minutes.

Hawk eating vole - Online Slideshow Creator

When he was finished he wiped his beak clean ready for the next time!

Hawk wiping mouth - Online Slideshow Creator

Last weekend my husband and I took to the trees ourselves. Mt Hermon Redwood Canopy Tours is an excellent way to spend a couple of hours and get a totally new perspective on the Redwoods. The guides are great and soon had this height-fearing gal comfortable whizzing through the tree tops.
That's the problem with California. There's just so much to do, it's hard to get it all done. Another great reason to take out your lawn and replace it with drought tolerant natives. Life's too short for mowing lawn!

Byddi Lee