And then there is the wonderful smell of orange and lemon blossoms. Sometimes the smell is overwhelming. And sometimes, it just sneaks up on you. Can't get enough of that.
We've been busy the past few weekends, getting work in between the rains. I've been working at taking out four oleanders in the front of our house. Hopefully that job will be done today. Some random garden notes:
We've cleared most our garden beds. Onions are started. Beets, peas, lettuce, beans and carrots are planted.
Marcia is starting the tomatoes from seed this year and we have a table top in the house now devoted to tiny little tomato plants.
After the super bowl, we picked the rest of our avocados. Was a great year for our tree and we have new flowers now. Hopefully the production will be the same this year.
We had broccoli from the garden the first weeks of this month and more is growing. However, some animal (I don't think it is a gopher) is nibbling at the base of the plants and we've lost several.
We had two tomato plants that made it through the winter, but are looking a bit worn out at this point.
Unfortunately, my cuttings from the Earthside wild grape don't seem to be taking.
Which reminds me that David has asked about our wild grape wine experiment. It was fun to pick and crush the grapes and, as I reported last year, the juice tastes similar to a concord grape. But, here's what happened to our wine effort. We successfully made wine out of the wild grape juice. But, turned out that the recipe we followed added too much water to the juice and the result was a kind of watered-down concord grape wine. I tried to compensate by adding some Welchs concord concentrate. The final product is drinkable, but not something I would recommend to others. I hope to do better this year.
Our less than stellar wild grape wine experiment matched our other experiments in fermentation. Our blackberry wine experiment (using blackberries gathered from our summer Oregon and NoCal trip) resulted in a very good blackberry vinegar, but no wine. Two seasons of trying to make hard cider have resulted in more very tasty vinegar.
Out of desperation, we finally tried a commercial wine making kit with all the ingredients and step by step by step instructions. The result has been a first rate red wine.
I'm looking forward to another try this year.