Sunday, July 01, 2007

Spanning the State--GARDEN! Edition

I'm a woman of limited passions. If I spread my interests too thin I become frustrated with the restrictions that come with the number of hours in a day. So besides politics, my only other serious hobby is gardening.

I don't write about gardening all that often because I'm emminently unqualified. I've considered taking the Master Gardener course through OSU. But the volunteer hours required are prohibitive for me until I have a LOT more free time. So I'll continue to fumble around in my limited capacity--figuring things out as I go.

This year is my first attempt at growing blueberries. My neighbors have grown them for years with great success. So this year I created a blueberry bed. The first few years apparently come with a meager harvest (I'll probably get a quart or two from my four plants).

But once they're well established I've been assured that they'll fruit like crazy.

The back raised bed garden was built 3 years ago. I grow vegetables, tomatoes and dahlias in it for the most part. Last year I grew dill which went to seed when I wasn't paying attention, so this year I'm pulling dill out of all the beds like weeds. The black shade cloth is up in front of the squash because I had to move the plant--which had volunteered right up next to a tomato plant. This garden gets heavy western exposure and the late afternoon/early evening heat was doing it in.

Last week I stopped at a garage sale on my way home and found this old, painted milk can. I have no idea how old the can (or the painting) is.

I've seen similar items in antique malls for upwards of $50-$100. I got 2 of these for $5. I sprayed this one with a few coats of clear lacquer to help keep the remaining paint from peeling away--and I gave the other one to my neighbor.

This is a pot of Mimulus that I started from seed. If you look closely, you'll see a little garden statue frog in the middle of the pot. My daughter gave that to me last year for my birthday.

Below is Queen-of-the-Prairie, which has grown in this location since before I moved into my house.

It's thrived in this location and despite its tendency to take over, I love it so I haven't dug it out.

Last Fall I decided to create a new garden at the side of my house. So I covered the lawn with newspaper and a heavy coating of new garden soil, and left it to winter over. The grass died off pretty well and I tilled the whole thing up with a generous amount mushroom compost this Spring.

Its still a work in progress--but this is what I've managed so far:

And now that you've indulged my garden hobby, let's indulge in my other. Let's Span the State!


In a Pamplin-esque move, Evanite Fiber Corp is offering to gift the city of Corvallis with a chunk of riverfront acreage along the Willamette River. The catch? Evanite wants the city to help get the company out from under state regs that "hinder operations" at the industrial site.

A federal judge has halted a US Forest Service timber sale with a restraining order. The judge will hear arguments on July 12 from conservation groups claiming that the Forest Service distorted scientific evidence on spotted owl habitat and the flouting of the Northwest Forest Plan's prohibition on logging old growth for commercial purposes.

A proposed mining operation near Coquille is under threat from locals who say that the proposed mine will threaten their health and their way of life.

The Register-Guard in Eugene gives the legislative session a B+.

If I was getting my electricity from Coos-Curry Electric I would be pissed. Their board just voted to close its meetings from members. Members may only attend meetings if they request to attend a session and be approved by the Board.

A Prairie City man is looking for a new home for his 2000+ can and bottle collection.

The LaGrande Observer notes that The Office of Rural Policy in Salem is riding on a razor's edge--looking at the business end of the budget ax for the 2008 session. The Observer believes that the Office is crucial to bridging the urban-rural divide in Oregon and is complaining that legislators aren't giving it a real chance to succeed.

Costco is cruising McMinnville in an effort to find a new location.