Monday, June 01, 2009

Adopt a Crop update: Plus everything else update, too.

Hi, it's been a while...

When I flew back into the Bay Area on Friday the pilot got on the not-loud-enough intercom to announce that the ground temp in San Jose was a breezy 72 degrees.

Oh sweet mother, that's what I like.

Especially since when I took off from Phoenix, it was an even 100 degrees. And I was wearing a hoodie because apparently I'm easily influenced by the crazy heat-ignorers of the Phoenix area who wear cool weather clothes despite the face-melting temperatures outside.

Do you know that I saw MANY people wearing jeans in Scottsdale? Do you know that my best friend said to me upon arrival, "You're lucky to visit this week - the weather's been so nice - not even 100!"

To which I said, "Hi. Are you retarded?" and then, "I don't think I have enough sunscreen on. Even to be inside."

My skin was scared.

Anyway, I'm home. Back in the Bay Area where it was a glorious overcast 55 degrees for my 11 mile Saturday run in which I did not collapse under the weight of two weeks without a long run (remember Yellowstone and Yosemite? Yeah, no running happened.). Perhaps it was because I have managed to keep up my mid-week runs even though one of them happened in Phoenix and even though I ran at 6am and it STILL turned out to be nearly 90 degrees because WHOOPSY I got lost and ran an extra two miles trying to find my way back to my friend's house amongst a sea of pink and beige single family establishments thus tacking on a few extra minutes during which the sun went into SCORCH EVERYTHING mode.

*Sigh* Sometimes I'm the retard.

But, when I got home from a week of ritualistic sunscreen application (on myself, friends and goddaughter), I was rewarded with a garden that did not miss me one bit.

Go wherever you want and we will, too.

Also, while you were out, we made beans.

And we've been blooming.

And we're shading the lettuce just like you asked.

And we're knee-high by May 31st, which doesn't rhyme but is still impressive.

And we look like balls. Green ones. What does that mean?

And we've making cucumbers.

And we're full of green tomatoes.

And we're all glossy and shit.

And I got off my dead ass and started growing. Finally.

And I'm making up for lost time even though I look like a total loser next to those other tomato plants that MAY be on the 'roids but you didn't hear it from me.

Which is fine. Because I don't need the garden to miss me and throw itself into a Pining For Mama death-fit, I just need it to grow and make food and look all green and healthy so that when the neighbors come over to congregate in our backyard (which is happening with increased regularity what with the new patio) they don't think I'm a shitty gardener who can't even grow the simplest things.

I can't have that. I need them to all think I'm a master gardener even though I'm fairly certain it's all due to luck BUT WHATEVER.

And hey, that's something else - our patio is done. WOO.

Only the patio's done so don't be all "What's with the dead spot in your lawn?" because I'm handling that, OK?

I mean, WOO! Woo the fucking contractors are gone! Woo no one is blocking my driveway with a Bobcat or 5 cubic yards of crushed rock! Woo my neighbors have stopped peaking through the fence and are instead volunteering our backyard for cocktail hour.

"Uh. Hi neighbor. What's that? Why yes I am napping on my lawn at 3 in the afternoon in a sombrero and No, I don't find that strange. Also, feel free to come and go as you please because, you know, mi patio es su patio. I guess."

Oh well. At least I like these people. And at least the shitty neighbors haven't been inspired to make themselves at home over here or add to the ongoing fun-making of Girl Who Sleeps On The Lawn.

And Bubba loves it. The neighbor gathering and all. And I love the patio, so we're even. And I got to buy new patio furniture, which makes everything OK because we're going to be able to eat outside on a table like grown-ups and that is much better than spilling BBQ in your lap when it's acting as a table.

Plus, you know I now get to FINALLY landscape our backyard. Holy holy - that's good times. And what I plan to do for the next three weeks since I plan to do ZERO traveling beyond the library, pilates studio, nursery and perhaps the fabric store.

If you need me, I'll be in the backyard ripping out some lawn and not, say, flying to places on the globe where temperatures are regularly reported in three digits.


  1. Living in Tucson, I know exactly what you mean about the heat in Phonenix. And I, too, wear jeans despite the temperature. We're weird like that. I consider it terribly cold if we get down to 80 degrees.

    Your garden looks fabulous and I'm so pleased for your finished patio project.

    About the dead spot in the grass, I'm having the same thing happen in my backyard and can't figure out what to do to remedy the situation. Our annual pool party is the 13th and I don't want our yard looking awful. Any suggestions?

  2. It's been totally rainy with temperatures in the 60's and 70's for the last month in Colorado. For once, all my vegetables actually flourished when I planted them in the garden instead of immediately shriveling up into little crispy versions of themselves.

    Your garden still kicks mine's ass, though.

    And that spot in your yard? Is it from dog pee or something else? 'Cause my sister had spots like that in her yard and put down some organic, microbial something or other and it totally worked. I can ask her what it was.

  3. Yay! Finny got home and didn't fry her brain in Phoenix.

    I mean, I can only assume.

    And your garden is looking fabulous. Before you know it, you'll be gnawing on corn and dribbling tomato juice down your chin. FUN.

  4. Junie - You crazy Arizonan in your jeans! I nearly died when we went out to dinner (just the girls - no kids) and my friend got dressed up in jeans and a black top. REALLY? IT'S 100 DEGREES OUTSIDE? And guess what, I was the only one in the restaurant in a skirt.


    Y'all are a special breed - a hardy one!

    So, from our experience (really Bubba's since he is the one who master-plans the lawn) some of the reasons for dead spots are; dog pee, something non-porous like concrete under the lawn, a spot the sprinkler is missing or a place commonly used to park furniture or other heavy items. Our remedy for fixing these spots has been to scrape back a bit of the dead space (just to open up the soil a bit) and fill in with a mix of grass seed and potting soil. Then we make sure it stays watered until it's reestablished. If the heat is drying it out too quickly, try shading it a little bit during the hottest parts of the day. That might also help the little new grass seeds from scorching.

    Also, the lawn patch stuff that Wendy (see previous comment) referred to works pretty well, too. :) With a few weeks until your party, you should be able to get the patch filled in if you start soon!

    Wendy - NICE! I love spring that way - does all the work for you so that you can just stand back and be like, "Yeah, I'm the master. And it's no work at all." Until summer comes and then SHIT. ;)

    The dead spot in the yard is from unwieldy contractors digging here and there whilst putting in the patio. S'ok. I'm tearing that water sucking shit out anyway (at least most of the dead parts) so by "handling it" I really mean "getting the fuck rid of it". Which is kinda the same, right?

    However, that organic microbial "lawn mixed with organic compound patching stuff" that you sprinkle down in the dead spots DOES totally work :) We've used it in the past when we still cared to have a lawn and it worked nicely. I leave the lawn to Bubba though. I find it to be mostly useless.

    Kris - I may have - the jury's still out. More likely, I contracted some weird A/C-borne disease since you know you spend your life in Phoenix running from A/C house to A/C car to A/C restaurant to A/C etc.

    I grew back my A/C shell while I was there and YUCK. Like, when you go outside and you can feel the intense heat burning off the cold layer the A/C has built on your skin? Yes. Gross.

    Oh well, my goddaughter is adorable and all my friends are still awesome and intact and one is BLESS HER HEART moving to Oregon so that I can visit her without taking out a life insurance policy for EXTREME HEATSTROKE. Brilliant.

    I am not yet letting myself believe that this albeit beautiful looking corn will ever really produce edible corn, but thank you for your optimism. :) Tomatoes, however, are looking promising and BEANS OH MY GOD THE BEANS. Soon we will be eating green beans for dinner every single night YES.


  5. That is one sharp looking driveway/patio! VERY nice! It has a nice organic feel the way it flows from one purpose to the next - and I love the pattern in the stones. Cool!

    TOTES jealous of all your garden stuff... Loving the beans!

    Um, can you say the corn is knee-high if it's in a raised bed and your foot is actually on the ground outside of the raised bed? Oh well - I see the leaves go a bit higher, so I'll give you "knee-high". ;-)

    BTW - how old is that car!?

  6. Jeph -- 42 years. That's the combined lifespan of 7 new Passats (no offense if you drive one). Still starts on the first turn of the key.
    Looks like hell, though.

  7. Wow!! "Looks like hell" - but kinda cool and rustic too, and I'm not a car guy.

    So I'm guessing it wouldn't pass an e-check???

  8. Glad you made it home safely Finny -- and you weren't fried in the process. Hey -- I've finally discovered the real reason to live trapped here in the midwest and not out there in paradise.

    We can say "Knee high by the 4th of July" and mean it. In all it's rhyming glory!

  9. Mi patio es su patio? hee hee! That made me snort.


[2013 update: You can't comment as an anonymous person anymore. Too many douchebags were leaving bullshit SPAM comments and my inbox was getting flooded, but if you're here to comment in a real way like a real person, go to it.]

Look at you commenting, that's fun.

So, here's the thing with commenting, unless you have an email address associated with your own profile, your comment will still post, but I won't have an email address with which to reply to you personally.

Sucks, right?

Anyway, to remedy this, I usually come back to my posts and post replies in the comment field with you.

But, if you ever want to email me directly to talk about pumpkins or shoes or what it's like to spend a good part of your day Swiffering - shoot me an email to finnyknitsATgmailDOTcom.