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Posts Tagged ‘Abbracci Coffee Bar’

Thursday, 21 December 2017

The night had been just below freezing.  I woke early to a white frosty world, poked my camera out the south cat door for an unscreened photo of frost on the grass…

…and went back to sleep for three more hours.  When I awoke, I suggested that we go do the post-frost clean up, in hope that finally the frost had put the gardens to sleep.

We began a few blocks east at

Mike’s garden,

which we have referred to till now as Mayor Mike’s garden.  He is retiring as mayor at the end of 2017.

The sun was bright, the air cold, and the ground just lightly frozen.

Pieris promising spring

pale pink hesperantha blooming on the west side

salmon pink hesperantha blooming on the north side

pulling spent hesperantha along the front path

Allan raked.

Anchorage Cottages

Some days back, we drove in and right back out of the Anchorage parking lot because I could see the chrysanthemums by the office were still blooming.  And today they were STILL blooming.

Chrysanths that will not quit.

Today, I showed Jody, the housekeeper, who also does some gardening, how to just cut them to the ground when and if they ever brown off (which they will…).  We are not going to keep returning to check on two chrysanthemums.  I also showed her that she could cut the Melianthus if we have a hard enough freeze to make it ugly.

Melianthus major in the center courtyard

frozen birdbath (Allan’s photo)

Allan’s photo: In early spring, we will cut back this sprawling plant even if it does not get frozen, just to shape it up.

Long Beach

My mind had been on the one big Geranium ‘Rozanne’ that I had left untrimmed.  Surely it would be frozen by now? But no.

Allan’s photos

Frost could make the California poppies ugly, too. At least they are small.

It has been so mild that the Rozannes we cut back early this year have put out rosettes of new leaves.

It got cut back anyway, because we are not going to keep checking on it through January and I don’t want to think about a potential blackened heap of frozen leaves later on.

An anemone was already blooming in Veterans Field.

Allan’s photo

a wreath in Veterans Field (Allan’s photo)

We did some cutting back in Fifth Street Park, of a pineapple sage, some Verbena bonariensis, and a bit of the sprawling Melianthus.

pulling some spent hesperantha flowers

as tidy as its going to get till at least late January

Once upon a time, the scrim of unclipped catmint along the front, above, would have greatly bothered me.  For some reason, this year I think it looks interesting against the dry flower heads of the Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’…or maybe it was just that my hands were so cold.

Primroses (cowslips) were already blooming under a street tree.

I can feel exactly how it will feel to go back to work in late January or early February, and the prospect feels ok.  My only problem is that I have gotten pretty much nowhere on my indoor winter projects.

We celebrated the true end of the work year with coffee, warmth, and Pink Poppy Bakery treats at Abbracci Coffee Bar.

Abbracci co-owner Tony

We and another regular customer each got to take home one of the Christmas centerpieces.. very nice, since we never got around to putting up a tree, and later the flowers can go in my wonderful compost bins.

Abbracci tree and centerpieces

Ilwaco Timberland Library

We had some books to pick up.

at the library entrance

deep shade behind the wall

In the library

As expected, I got quite a pile of books, despite my original staycation plan for re-reading books on my own bookshelves.  Maybe that will wait till sometime when I am homebound for one reason or another.

a new batch, and the previous batch is not done yet

We had brought home a bucket of Abbracci coffee grounds and enough clean compost to add a wheelbarrow’s worth to my bins.  As I chopped it into small pieces and turned some from one bin to another at dusk, I did not mind the cold at all.

I have a compost obsession.

All the work got erased from the work side of the board, as did “Call Accountant”.  I had found an email address for the accountant we want, so I emailed her on the way home this afternoon.  I won’t have to call unless we don’t hear back in my preferred medium for anything business related (email, text, Facebook messaging, anything but a business phone call!).  (Carol, this does not mean you and Bill!)

a joyous sight

Salt Pub

After dark, we attended a Salty Talk at Salt Pub.

“Join Jim Sayce, historian and Executive Director of the Pacific County Economic Development Council, in a SALTY Talks presentation, “Reading the Land: Forensic Ecology” exploring the changes in the local landscape over time. Jim will show us how to recognize the subtle clues that can help find the original or historic landscape of a site within the bones of the built environment.”

Allan’s photo

delicious burger with salad subbed for fried (Allan’s photo)

window reflection

night marina

More boats than one used to decorate with lights.  The winter storms and wet weather caused too many electrical problems and so that pretty tradition ended just a few years back. We were happy to see one or two boats still carrying it on.

The Salt holiday tree

The lecture was well attended for one so close to the holidays.

Museum director Betsy Millard introduces the lecture (Allan’s photo)

Jim has a good collection of photos to illustrate how you can see the underlay of history.  For example, a line of trees representing old fence lines (where the trees grew up under the fence and the fence eventually disappeared):

He showed our changing views due to accretion of the beach (in some places half a mile wider than it used to be) and the growth of beach pines, which were not there a century ago.   Many beach trails were begun over 100 years ago and have simply been lengthened by trodding feet as the beach itself moved westward.

Allan captured some of the interesting old photos:

The “elephant rocks” used to be out in the surf, as an old photo showed, and are now well inland of Waikiki Beach.

rocks once out in the surf…

and now on land

An old highway has gone back to nature by the new highway 101.  Through a layer of grass and moss, the yellow line of the old highway occasionally shows through.

Jim Sayce

Jim’s laser pointer was not working.

The old and new photos pleased and fascinated us.

Jim’s blog, circa 2011 and before, is here.

It is now time for five weeks of true staycation.

 

 

 

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Friday, 15 December 2017

When we’d learned there was to be a rally against ICE deportations in the afternoon, interfering with my at-home goals, I had decided that we should try to polish off some of the leftover work beforehand.

We began at the Ilwaco boatyard garden, planting about six good sized starts of Solidago ‘Fireworks’ in empty spaces along the two block long garden.

boatyard garden looking south

planting

The last of the old cosmos got pulled, and I am calling this garden done for 2017.

crab pot tree at the end of the garden (Allan’s photo)

In Long Beach’s Fifth Street Park, I planted two clumps of the solidago (a short and well behaved clumping goldenrod) while Allan snipped a few stray brown stems from nearby planters.

Fifth Street Park

Narcissi already blooming in Fifth Street Park

We cruised up to the Anchorage Cottages, thinking we could finally clip back the chrysanthemums and agyranthemums.  Our summery weather had them still blooming, so we did not even get out of the van, just turned around and left.

At The Red Barn Arena, we planted a couple of pieces of the goldenrod and pulled out one dead erysimum.

a wee bit of weeding

Midge in her fine coat.

Next door at Diane’s garden, the remaining annuals still looked too lush to pull.  I left a note suggesting she just cut back anything in those pots that looks tatty later.  I can’t keep going back to check on them every week; that is not cost effective for either of us.

the annuals that will not die

I look forward to many bulbs in this raised septic garden.

We now had an hour and a half left before the rally, with no more work to do.  This called for a stop at NIVA green.

In NIVA green, with Heather’s assistant, Wes, and Heather Ramsay herself

a peek through the doorway into the magic workshop (Allan’s photo)

Heather had put out some new lamps:

I fell hard for this double decker nightlight and got it for myself, even though buying presents for myself was not on the agenda.

This red truck is going to go beautifully with a “Card Lady’ card of a red truck with a Christmas tree in the back.

After NIVA, we spent 40 minutes relaxing at Abbracci Coffee Bar.  I am quite annoyed that the bright summer-like sun blurred out my focus on the Christmas tree in their window.  Trust me, it was such a pretty sight.  Let’s say it is like a water colour.

an elegant pattern on my latte

Maddy of Pink Poppy Bakery is retiring her business to become a personal chef for an artists’ retreat.   Abbracci will be the only local place to get her baked goods, like this delicately flavoured Swedish Traveling Cake.  Elixir Coffee up in South Bend will also have her treats.

Abbracci art (Allan’s photo)

In Abbracci, I had such a helpful conversation with owners Tony and Bernardo and one of their patrons. I was asked (not in these exact words) about the severe clean up of the narrow garden to the south of their building: Would the plants come back? I had dug up lots of volunteer blue scabiosa and other perennials in an attempt to start over. I told them that I try to rein in my “messy gardening style” and was thinking of a much tidier planting there. Turns out all three of them love the wild and tangly style. It made the happy to hear that I could so easily make that garden bed messy again.

Finally, it was time for the rally.  This time, the organizer had decided to split the event between Long Beach and Ocean Park.  I had kvetched about it making the groups too small, and indeed, the rally began with only three of us.  For new readers, here is the background again:

“[Long Beach Peninsula Resident] Rosas was arrested when going to Okie’s early in the morning of November 27. When he asked why he was being arrested, ICE officers said “My supervisor asked me to come find you because of what appeared in the newspaper.” We want to speak out against this arrest and on the attack on his rights to free speech.

The original story in the Seattle Times (my home town paper) is here, and well worth reading.

The follow up, after the arrest of Rosas, is here.

He appears to have been sought out because he spoke (under his nickname) to the Seattle Times.  ICE did not detain him earlier, even though he asked them why they took his family and not him.

This story has drawn the attention of the Mexican consulate and has been picked up by national and international news, including the Washington Post and The Independent, UK.

Here is a link to the gofundme where you can contribute, to help him and his family, who were deported to Mexico.  (His children are American citizens, who went with their mother.)

Today, when we first arrived, we thought there was no one else, and we waited in our van for a bit.  Then we saw one lone figure arrive; it was Ann, who had also been waiting in her vehicle.

Allan’s photo

We settled into our rallying as the wind picked up and the rain arrived.  Allan took all the rally photos but one.  My hands were so cold that I didn’t even think of getting out the camera.

Only once were we heckled with a “WOOO Trump!” from a young fellow driving a foreign made car; the rest of the interaction from passing vehicles was all waves and honks and thumbs up.

Everyne at the Ocean Park rally point bailed out when the rain came.  I was not about to stop for rain; I know darn well that Rosas himself worked on the bay in all sorts of weather.

MaryBeth saw my one real-time photo on Facebook and came to join us.  Four felt much more effective to me than three.

The rain finally stopped and out came a rainbow behind us.

Our good friend Susie was just at that moment returning from an out of town trip, too late to join us..

our Susie

We endured till 4:15 PM.

Allan and I could see a glorious pink sky and so we drove to the west end of Sid Snyder drive for a better look.

looking west

Allan’s photo, to the south

We nabbed a few Christmas lights photos on the way home.

Ilwaco City Hall

Ocean Beach Hospital, Ilwaco (Allan’s photo)

Ocean Beach Hospital (Allan’s photo)

Crab pots on First Avenue

We had a mere 45 minutes turn around time at home.  I was able to erase Diane’s garden and the Red Barn from the work board.  The other jobs are simply going to have to wait until we have a hard frost for their final check up…if we have such a thing this winter.

We soon left again for our weekly North Beach Garden Gang dinner at OleBob’s Café at the Port.

on the way: The Crab Pot Tree

The four us us (Tangly Cottage Gardening and Sea Star Gardening) were joined this week by our good friend Ed of Strange Landscaping.

In the entry hallway: Pins show where visitors have come from.

a local sea captain

This week’s specials:

a beef empanada

the view

south window reflection shows the inside, the outdoor dining deck, and the Jessie’s Ilwaco Fish Co Christmas star

Dave, Ed, Allan, Melissa, with Lynn and Chef Laura in the background

Paella was another special of the night.

Allan’s fresh caught rockfish with Laura’s chimichurri sauce and a “perfectly done” baked potato

flan for dessert

We stayed till after closing, when I was so happy to sit with Laura’s dog, Pancho.

I so much want a nice little dog.  Pancho is such a good boy.

I suddenly felt ever so exhausted.  Yet tomorrow is another busy, not at-home day.

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Thursday, 16 November 2017

The forecast was for so much rain that we probably would not have tried to work, had we not  an appointment to see Shelly Pollock at NW Insurance and Financial to sort out my health insurance.  This drew me out of the house and away from reading The Grapes of Wrath.

First, in a dry hour, we tidied up a block worth of Ilwaco planters.

street tree, before (Allan’s photos)

before

after clipping lavenders and oregano

cleaning up a block worth of Ilwaco planters (telephoto)

also did three more planters near the stoplight intersection (Allan cut down that Sedum and pulled the nasturtiums)

A local fellow walked by and said how much he liked the nasturtiums and that he had picked up the fallen seeds and planted them around town.  I hope they all come up!  Allan refers to the seeds as “little brains”, which is what they look like.

Long Beach

Shelly’s office is in Long Beach.  We bracketed the appointment with some attempts to further tidy Long Beach planters and street tree gardens.  We did get two on the nearest corner done, mostly in the rain, before time to see her.

Bella in Shelly’s waiting room

Allan’s photo

Allan’s photo

The books on the table, Starfish and Bottom Feeders, are from an excellent cozy mystery series by our friend Jan Bono.

on Shelly’s desk

As we got started on our health insurance, the Washington State Affordable Care Act website locked us out of our account as we tried to change the password because we had forgotten to bring ours.  (It has to be long and complicated, and the site makes Allan change it frequently.)  Because we’d be locked out of it for half an hour, we went off to try to work again and agreed to return in an hour.

We got a bit more planter work done.

before

and after (Allan’s photos)

Work soon became impossible.

So we went to Abbracci Coffee Bar, two blocks north, for a treat.

We got a window table.

Tony and Bernardo (Allan’s photo)

Allan’s photo

Mexican hot chocolate and cookies

We got to see our friend, Sophie (Allan’s photo)

Back at Shelly’s office an hour later, Allan was outside trying to tidy under the street tree while I waited for Shelly’s previous appointment to end.  As it did, Allan took shelter from pelting hail.

I knocked on the window for him to come in.

This time, we were able to access the website.  I am so grateful to Shelly for her expert help.  I got signed up for a plan I can afford, with the ACA tax rebate.  Without it, my plan would cost about $800 a month, or approximately half my annual income.  The greed and fear of the insurance companies (and pharmaceutical industry and the Republican party) may be the downfall of the ACA, but not yet.  Two and a half years for me before the relative safely of Medicare…  Shelly says that people used to be sad to get older, but that now people are rejoicing in her office to have turned 65 (Medicare age).  Medicare will also cost us about 1/4 of our eventual Social Security income, so even that is not a pretty picture for old age.

Continuing with work was futile, as the day turned as dark as dusk at 4 PM.

On the way home, we stopped at the library to pick up a film I had ordered.

The library garden had drifts of hail:

Allan’s photo

Allan’s photo

Next: the rest of our day, including a mushroom lecture.  It was too long a day to write about in one post, despite us not getting much done.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Saturday, 4 November 2017

On the way to work, I took a bouquet (reassembled from our Halloween bouquets) to the Columbia Pacific Heritage Museum for tonight’s event.

Long Beach

We went to Long Beach in a light, cold drizzle.  After a search for a parking spot on a busy Saturday, we repaired to Abbracci Coffee Bar to wait out the rain.  The Dark Sky app promised that it would stop in half an hour.

Tony and Bernardo of Abbracci

new autumnal art by Brad Carlson

Bernardo showed us photos of the successful cast leaves that he had made from gunnera I had provided from nearby Fifth Street Park.

success!

The rain did stop, as predicted, so we were able to start work after our coffee.

We had received in the mail a sympathy card from Dr. Raela at Oceanside Animal Clinic.  At first, I thought I had better wait to read it.  I couldn’t wait.

Dr. Raela’s message helped me a great deal with my feelings about having made the decision to have Smoky euthanized, which was so hard even though it was clear he was not going to get better and that he was so miserable and uncomfortable.  A veterinarian with this much insight and compassion is a treasure indeed.

It took me a while to join Allan at cleaning up the nearby park.

Fifth Street Park, west fence with Super Dorothy Rose.

Allan first did some fall clean up of the SW quadrant of the park.  We leave the Helianthus ‘Lemon Queen’ standing through the winter here because it helps hide a not very attractive line of old pampas grass behind the restroom building.

(Allan’s photos) before

after

before

after

I began by cutting back the Darmera peltata in the SE quadrant by Benson’s Restaurant.  Even though I still like the way it looks before, I know the city crew will appreciate having the pond edge clear so they can do their fall clean up of fallen tree leaves in the water.

before

gunnera and darmera leaves obscuring the edge

a little darmera start in the waterfall

Allan came from his first project across the street and tidied up the little monument garden some more.

before

after shearing the lady’s mantle

Allan pried off a big piece of darmera that had attached itself to the side of a rock.

I showed him how the leaves having fallen off the maples had revealed a bindweed that had climbed from the hydrangeas in the back corner way up into the tree.

how embarrassing! (Allan’s photos)

He removed the bindweed with the pole pruners.

I had not intended to prune the big hydrangea, until I realized that it was so tall it was obscuring the lamp post in the corner of the park.  Much pruning ensued, including the ivy (from the lot next door, from whence the bindweed also comes) that was also interfering with the light.

This is just the hydrangea debris.

 Three tarp loads of darmera and gunnera debris got dragged by Allan half a block to our trailer to go home into our compost bins.

North, across the side street, the classic frying pan photo being taken (Allan’s photo)

Here is the before again:

before

And the after:

I think the city crew will be happy to see this on Monday.

I have an idea that a string trimmer might be the answer to cleaning up this difficult very muddy bed in the same park:

Next time!

We still had a lot of clean up to do.  Allan hauled the third tarp full of compostable debris to the trailer, which was parked up the street past Abbracci.

tarp load number three (Allan’s photo)

Allan’s photo

Allan noticed the three bikes parked in a tree garden. When he joined me back in the park, with the van and trailer moved to the side street in order to load up the hydrangea debris, he asked me to see if the bikes belonged to coffee shop customers and if so to request that they move them out of our garden.

All too typical.  Signs on the lamp posts, by the way, say no bicycle riding on the sidewalks, which is often ignored.

The coffee shop which was empty save for the owners and for a dad with two young daughters, who indeed owned the bikes.  I asked if they would please move the bikes out of “my garden”.  The dad said, “YOUR garden? I thought it was a public garden!”

“Yes, it is a public garden, and I’m the public gardener,” I replied, with every effort to be jolly and pleasant.  “I just tend to call it mine because I work on it, but the city would prefer if people not put their bikes on the plants.”

“Do you have a card to prove you’re the public gardener?” the dad asked.

I could not help but laugh, and said, “No, I’m not a card carrying public gardener.  I could send my husband here with an orange vest on, but we are too busy cleaning up the park.”  I just gave up and left.

I realized later that Allan had been dragging his tarp of debris past the big windows of the coffee shop and loading it into the trailer.  The dad must have seen!

Not long after that, the dad and two daughters went bicycling past us, heading down the main sidewalk (despite signs on almost every lamp post saying no bicycling on the sidewalks).  We were parked in full view, with a traffic cone behind us, a few feet up the side street, loading debris. I called out in my jolliest voice, with a smile, “Here’s my public gardener ‘card’, this trailer full of debris!  See how full it is? We just cleaned up this park!”  I added, “Girls, look!  Public gardeners!”  The girls looked but the dad gazed straight ahead and kept pedaling.  I was laughing because it was so ludicrous to have been asked for a card.  Why would I even care where people park their bikes if I were not responsible for the plants?

I went back into Abbracci for a moment to confirm that I had not sounded mean when I asked the guy to move the bikes.  Nope.  I observed that the soil under the tree was a bit compacted by the bikes, that more damage would have been done in the summer when the plants were fuller, and that there is plenty of room for bikes on the sidewalk next to the bench.  (To my eternal amazement, summer does not stop people from parking bikes, strollers, and dogs on top of the plants under the trees.)

We dumped the hydrangea debris at City Works and got home with less than an hour to spare before our evening event.  The offload of the compost debris would have to wait till Sunday.

6×6 Art Auction

Tomorrow’s post, shared from Our Ilwaco blog, will be all about the always entertaining annual 6×6 at the Columbia Pacific Heritage Museum.  I just want to share the personal aspects of it here.

I was touched that the museum reserved a table for us.  They know we will share photos on Discover Ilwaco and in our blog, so we got a great view of Karla, the communications expert, and of Bruce, the auctioneer, as you will see in tomorrow’s post.

Allan’s photo

Our Steve and John of the Bayside Garden attended.

John and Steve (Allan’s photo)

They have mounted another attack on salal in their garden, and we hope to go see the results next week.

A friend said that she had a gift for me.  It was a rainbow bracelet in honor of Smoky (and the Rainbow Bridge).  My face blindness kicked in and I had to go up later and ask her who she was: Leslie, who paints the sock monkey painting each year, and who I know quite well online but not so much to recognize in person…yet.  If her little dog, the Bean, had been with her I would have known her identity right away.

Allan’s photo

Two artist friends, Heather of NIVA green (our favourite shop) and Joe Chasse, attended.

Heather and Joe (Allan’s photo)

We were pleased that Joe sat at our table, and I was particularly pleased that I won his art piece in the silent auction.

Joe’s 6×6 creation, at home with me

I also bid on and won Wendy Murry’s piece.  I’ve gotten hers all but one of the years that she has submitted art.  This year, because the theme was the sixties, the piece is very 60s in feel.  I had a bit of a battle to win it.

“When the power of love overcomes the love of power, there will be peace.” -Jimi Hendrix

Our Kathleen got the other piece I bid on.  I had forgotten to increase my bid!  I will be able to visit it in her cottage.

1964 Long Beach by Leslie Price, won by Our Kathleen

The mosaic piece was right next to Wendy’s!

Allan’s photo

Usually the art in the live auction goes for a pretty penny, and my favourite live auction piece this year, by local artist Wendi Peterson (spouse of the auctioneer, Bruce) sold for $350.00  (I once bid almost that much for, and won, a piece by Wendy Murry in the live auction.  Not this year, with my recent vet bill.)  I am happy to admire the painting here:

Three Dog Night by Wendi Peterson

Later, at home, with Frosty:

 

 

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Thursday, 7 September 2017

The prediction of “less than an eighth of an inch of rain” would not stop us from watering the Long Beach and Ilwaco planters.  They are so thick with foliage now that rain has to be substantial to penetrate into the soil.

I got to pet local dog Frosty at the post office on the way to work.

Long Beach

At the welcome sign, I pruned down a lot of the silly cosmos that were tall with no buds.  Why do some of them do this, when they are all the same sort (Sensation mix)?

front

from the sidewalk

back

bucket o’ prunings

We split up to water the Long Beach planters.

Lavender and the Herb N Legend Smoke Shop

Even though Rod Run does not officially begin till tomorrow, downtown Long Beach was full of fancy vehicles going round and round or parked to show off.

Folks were already sitting and watching the vehicles.

Allan’s photo

my own agastache admiration

Allan’s photo

Agastache labeled as ‘Acapulco Salmon and Pink’, that came back from last year.

same planter, new Agastache labeled as ‘Acapulco Salmon and Pink’. Huh.

Rod Run window at NIVA green

triple batch of cuteness

another trio (Allan’s photo)

sweet pea success (Allan’s photo)

A City Hall VIP walked by and said to me, “The planters look beautiful.  I am so sorry a bunch of asshats will be sitting on them this weekend.”  (That is why it felt urgent to get photos today.)  She added, because she is one who used to do a volunteer planter, “I used to cry after every Rod Run.”

The planter damage is not as bad as when the Run used to be an official parade through Long Beach for hours on Saturday afternoon, coinciding with Labor Day.  The last time that happened, maybe fifteen years ago, the crowds were so chaotic that the local law enforcement said they would no longer police the event unless it was moved to the weekend after Labor Day and no longer had a parade up one side and down the other of the Peninsula.  It’s not the shiny car folks who caused the chaos.  They don’t want to get their vehicles scratched or smudged.  It was a certain element of heavy drinking audience; the other problem was that gridlock stopped emergency access.

Despite Rod Runner’s disappointment with the change, and their loss of a three day weekend, the new schedule has worked out well in extending the tourist season for one more week and has been a great boon to our planters.

Verbena bonariensis and Melianthus major, Fifth Street Park (Allan’s photo)

We paused after watering, followed by tidying Fifth Street Park, for a coffee and cookie break at Abbracci.

Abbracci Coffee Bar

a nice big batch of coffee grounds for our compost bins (Allan’s photo)

I got to pet darling Sophie.

car spotting (Allan’s photo)

and so it begins (Allan’s photo)

We had an amusing chat with this pleasant fellow, who said he was looking carefully before stepping and that his wife would kill him if he stepped on a plant.  Others over the weekend may be less cautious.

Twice I had seen a most interesting truck drive by.  After coffee, while clipping rugosa roses by the police station, I saw it park across the street.  I dropped my clippers into the roses and toddled over there as fast as possible to photograph it, and later I could not find my clippers.  They will turn up next time we prune the roses down low (probably October!)

I see it and rush to catch it!

saw-topped truck

old vs. new

I do hope this truck shows up at Slow Drag tomorrow night.

Gaura lindheimeri ‘Whirling Butterflies’ in Veterans Field

Vet Field flower admirer (Allan’s photo)

Figs behind Lewis and Clark Square (Allan’s photo)

a “rat rod” (Allan’s photo)

Allan’s photo

We watered the planters on Sid Snyder Drive.  A couch sits there, having recently appeared.  It would be more useful downtown for viewing Rod Run.

Waterlogue

I got to pet this darling dog, who has a tremendously soft coat.

my new friend Buddy

Ilwaco

I watered and weeded at the boatyard while Allan watered the street trees and planters.

This frog hitched a ride from home on Allan’s water trailer, to where it gets filled up at the boatyard.  Allan caught him in a jar and took him back home again.

It was four o clock when we got started in Ilwaco, and, as a passerby pointed out, the four o clocks were open.

Mirabilis jalapa ‘Salmon Sunset’

Helenium (sneezeweed)

The watering started well, because the long hose for the south end was available.  (When we arrive after the staff departs, the end of it is locked into a shed).

Then I walked further along the fence and found the two middle hoses going up into boats.

hose going into the Tlingit Princess

and into the Sea-Jac

But, oh joy, the long northernmost hose was available today!

Joy and rejoicing!

Between that and our own long hose hooked up to the faucet by the sanican, the watering was easy.

Our local paper recently had a good article about stories from the boatyard this past summer.  This red boat was painted in the favourite colour of the boat owner’s wife, who had died of breast cancer not long ago.

in memory of Mary Lou

Author Luke Whittaker: “The boat had been sitting in Sitka, Alaska since 1989 awaiting a buyer, when 82-year-old Astoria fishermen Roger Marshall, became the unlikely owner last fall. Marshall was simply one fisherman who just wasn’t ready to retire. In October, Marshall bought the boat and nearly died during a desperate 800-mile journey home.

“Coming down I ran into terrible southeast winds all the way,” Marshall said. “I ran into some bum weather coming out of Candle River and I thought I bought the farm.”

Fortunately, Marshall made it home, after all — he had a promise to keep to his late wife Mary Lou.

“I told her when she was dying I would paint it red,” Marshall said. “It was her favorite color.” Mary Lou died from breast cancer in March. In August, Marshall fulfilled his promise with help from Fred Wiest. The bottom is burgundy with white sides and a bold, red stripe stretching bow to stern.”

 

sweet peas reaching the top of the fence

Someone keeps messing with my elephant garlic. Now every single one has been pulled, and a few left behind.

When I see a plant pulled and dropped, I wonder if a driver passing by yelled at the plant thief to stop.

north end of boatyard

Seashells cosmos

looking north

Solidago ‘Fireworks’, a nicely clumping goldenrod

seen while watering planters (Allan’s photo)

one of the Ilwaco planters with Erysimum ‘Bowles Mauve’ and diascias (Allan’s photo)

planter with Acidanthera (Allan’s photo)

Allan finished the planters and rejoined me.  I had had plenty of time to do some weeding and deadheading, too.  I’d been pondering the decision about whether to water the easternmost curbside garden.  Because of Slow Drag visitors tomorrow, we decided it must be done as only a slight drizzle of rain had arrived.  Allan went to accomplish that after dropping me at home.

He passed by our Jenna (Queen La De Da) who was setting up for Slow Drag.

fog rolling in and the shaved ice booth (Allan’s photo)

Gaura ‘Whirling Butterflies’ (Allan’s photo)

Home again, Allan watched Skooter go fishing.

Soon after, rain began and continued for hours.  That was both pleasing and, because of our boatyard and curbside watering today, mildly annoying.

Friday, 8 September 2017

pre-Slow Drag

I spent the early afternoon catching up on writing this blog, because with two big events coming up, we will have much to share.  Slow Drag happens tonight, Cannon Beach Cottage Tour tomorrow (and the blog will then be more like fifteen days behind Real Time).

Rain had filled most of the rain barrels.

This one, from the shed, is the slowest to fill.

official rain gauge

right: a recent clematis tragedy despite semi-diligent watering

puddle in street with ugly new big-citified yellow lines

on the front window (Allan’s photo)

I am looking forward to the Slow Drag and the Cottage Tour, two of my favourite events, and am also fervently looking forward to afterward, when we have no events for quite some time.

Thursday, despite flat light, we did take photos of all the Long Beach planters.  Tonight, I am publishing a bonus post of the planters for my reference.  It will be on interest only to the most dedicated planter fan.

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Monday, 28 August 2017

Long Beach

With the terrible flooding in Houston going on, I’d feel like a wretch if I complained about the weather here.  So let me just share:

And let me add that calling this “warm” is nuts.  “Smoke” was also in the forecast for today and created a haze around the edges of the sky.  We think this time it is from wildfires in Oregon rather than in Canada.  Later, someone said we had had “100% humidity”.  It felt very different from any hot weather that I have experienced here.

Fortunately, most (but not enough) of our work day involved watering.

We began with two north blocks so that I could buy some spray paint on sale.  I need to repaint the tall bamboo poles in our garden before winter.

I briefly popped into the always fascinating NIVA green shop to add to my photo collection for the shop’s Facebook page.

in NIVA green

Today we watered the planters and the street trees.

My walkabout photos:

across the street in Fifth Street Park: the classic frying pan photo being taken

Those folks getting their photo taken do not know that they are supposed to fling their arms up like they are clams frying in a pan.  Not that clams have arms.  But that’s what people do.

A fellow walked by and, as often happens, complimented the planters.  Then he asked, “Do you take care of the big pansy buckets, too?”  I somehow knew he meant the big hanging baskets from the Basket Case Greenhouse, which the city crew waters every morning.

Herb ‘N Legend Smoke Shop

My friend Tam from the smoke shop showing off his whiskers.

California poppies

more California poppies

Agastache ‘Blue Boa’

the carousel

Eryngium and Agastache in the big Lewis and Clark Square planter

Why don’t I plant more eryngiums in the regular sized planters?  How odd that I do not.  Must fix that.

Allan and I met up halfway through and had a break at Abbracci Coffee Bar for refreshing iced coffees.

a black labrador to pet

in Abbracci

Allan’s walkabout photos:

Geranium ‘Rozanne’

deadheading

Cosmos ‘Sonata’

The bees go round and round the center of the cosmos.

by Wind World Kites

With the trees and planters watered, we moved the van to park by Veterans Field, where I did some weeding while Allan pulled old Crocosmia ‘Lucifer from a corner of Third Street Park.

Veterans Field with Gaura ‘Whirling Butterflies’

Crocosmia project, before (Allan’s photos); looked like a bear had sat in it.

after

We walked along the Bolstad beach approach garden, clipping any rugosa rose stem that had strayed into the street.

the Bolstad approach, looking east

The city crew was dismantling kite festival…(Allan’s photo)

We think this selfie was with the rugosa roses instead of with the arch! (Allan’s photo)

While I went into city hall to sort out some paperwork, Allan pulled some more Crocosmia.

before

after (The gold shrub is Physocarpus ‘Dart’s Gold’

Ilwaco

I had intended to walk the planter route, checking on them for chickweed and so forth.  However, my foot hurt too much so I went home, watered, and belatedly did our B&O quarterly tax forms.  Allan watered the Ilwaco trees and planters:

Pennisetum macrourum at the boatyard

poppies reseeded in the street at sunset

A kind local friend gave me the sort of foot brace you wear while sleeping in order to help cure plantar fasciitis.  I think it is helping…but it is slow going getting better.

 

 

 

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Thursday, 10 August 201

Before we left for work, Devery brought us some of a big organic cabbage grown by a friend and told us that she had adopted a little Chihuahua pug dog, which I could meet at the end of the day.

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our volunteer garden at the Ilwaco post office…needs more santolina in the front.  Next year!

Long Beach

We had had a trace of rain overnight, not enough to save us from the watering of the Long Beach planters.  Today, the job went faster because it wasn’t street tree watering day.

First we deadheaded at the welcome sign.  Allan ran the string trimmer around it.

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Allan’s photo

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front

I wish I had taken a photo before trimming the corner plant of Geranium ‘Orion’.  I want to show how much better Geranium ‘Rozanne’ is.

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after trimming deadheads off of Orion

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Rozanne does not need deadheading and does not have a plain green center to the plant.

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Rozanne is bigger and bluer.

Rozanne, I let myself be tempted by someone else.  I wish I had nothing but you for the blue in the Long Beach welcome sign garden.  I regret that I strayed.

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back of sign with Rozanne at the ends and Orion in the middle.

In the fall, Orion is coming out of that planter and will be replaced with all Rozanne.

We split up to water the downtown planters.  Allan went north and I went south.

One of my first planters was by the carousel.

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The last two times I have watered the four planters within sound of the carousel, the music has been 80s—Girls Just Wanna Have Fun, You Spin Me Round (Dead or Alive), leading to almost painful nostalgia.  Today, the song was Karma Chameleon by Culture Club, reminding me intensely of the ten years that horror writer Wilum Pugmire lived in my attic.  We drifted apart after I moved (for a long time he did not even have email).  By leaving Seattle, I terribly disrupted his living situation (although it did turn out well in the end).

He adored Boy George and his attire evoked both Boy George and his other beloved icon, Barbra Streisand.

wilum

me and Wilum almost exactly thirty years ago (1987) and Wilum in his full regalia

Sometimes the memories evoked by the carousel music are almost too much for me.

Moving on to the next set of planters, I was immensely cheered by these four fierce chihuahas.

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first three.

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Then a fourth one appeared.

As I watered the nearby planter, I saw many passersby amused by this quartet.  (The day was cool, almost cold, and the window was cracked open.)

I started thinking happily about my new neighbour, Devery’s chi-pug dog, whom I would soon meet.  I suddenly realized that he was the very same dog, Roy, that I’d noticed in the local humane society’s availability update.  He had appealed to me because I so like the Basket Case Greenhouse chi-pug, Buddy.  And now Roy would be my dog-neighbour! (Devery is calling him “Royal”.)

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I looked Roy’s picture up on the humane society Facebook page.

A little further on, I admired the latest tigridia blooms and noticed their crown-like center.

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Today’s tigridia

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At the south end of downtown, a sign amused me.  I’ve looked at it every week and never noticed the missing letter till now.

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I admired the excellent window boxes at Dooger’s Restaurant:

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from across the street

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and closer

And also the window box at Lighthouse Realty.

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Moving along…

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Gladiolus papilio

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the wildflower meadow look

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Lily ‘Black Beauty’ in Fifth Street Park

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Lilium ‘Black Beauty’; note the green furrows

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Helenium ‘Sahin’s Early Flowerer’ and catmint

Photos from Allan’s watering walkabout:

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traffic jam

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Agastaches in Lewis and Clark Square planter

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Cosmos ‘Sonata’ and Geranium ‘Rozanne’

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Coulter Park: two fallen cosmos on the lawn

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Cosmos and Berberis ‘Helmond Pillar’

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snapdragons and agastache

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Geranium ‘Rozanne’

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Agastache

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Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’ and santolina

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Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’

With the planters all watered in good time, we took a break at Abbracci Coffee Bar.

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Allan’s photo; we leave our gear on the tree bench

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Maddy of Pink Poppy Bakery had just delivered a brown sugar cake.

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flowers in Abbracci

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all gone (Allan’s photo)

We finished up Long Beach with some clipping in Fifth Street Park.

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I don’t think this garden is as good as usual this year.

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The problem is the cosmos, which should be tall, are short.  It seemed to me earlier this summer that the beds were not getting as much water as usual.

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In fall, I am going to divide and spread around the heleniums…

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…even though they clash with the backdrop of insipid, mildewy pink Dorothy Perkins rose.

Allan sent this man to me for a plant ID.  It was, of course, for the tigridia (Mexican shell flowers).

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Allan trimmed back this lady’s mantle…

alchemilla

Alchemilla mollis

…and noticed the interesting seedheads (or spent flowers):

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I thinned this batch a bit.  It still has enough yellow to stay till next week.

We were done with plenty of time for our Ilwaco work tasks.

Ilwaco

We drove past our house to have a gander at the progress of the playground at the end of town.  Or so we planned, till I looked down Devery’s driveway and saw her with her new dog.  “Back up!” I cried, eager to meet a new friend.  Never mind the playground for today.

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my new friend, Royal

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He’s so soft and sleek.

Royal was rescued from a kill shelter in California and brought to our local no-kill shelter, where he was lucky enough to be found by Devery.

Allan went to water the Ilwaco planters, while I weeded at the Norwood and the J’s gardens.

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our own front garden

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the second of four beds that are outside the deer fence on the west side of the house

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elephant garlic next to Devery’s driveway

I got back to work:

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The J’s roses

I am pleased that the new hydrangeas in the Norwood garden are putting out new flowers (after I had to cut off the too-floppy flowers they came with).

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Endless Summer hydrangea coming back into bud

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Norwood garden Agapanthus and lavender

Just as I was leaving Norwoods, I saw Jay himself arrive…with a puppy, making the sixth darling small dog of the day.

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eight week old Julius

At home, buddies Smokey and Calvin were snoozing together.

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My last garden event of the day: harvesting cukes out of the greenhouse.

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Meanwhile, Allan watered the Ilwaco street trees and planters and got the photos I wanted that show how the planters enhance the town, even though they are small and mostly located in a difficult wind tunnel straight up from the river.

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The city hall planters are fancier because the staff gives them supplemental watering beyond our two times a week.

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This one half died for some reason.  Has been recently replanted.  Allan thinks the trailing rosemary looks like a waterfall under the fish mural.

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Our Jenna gives this one by her studio supplemental water.  Something is chomping the nasturtium leaves.

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Erysimum ‘Bowles Mauve’

Now we have three days off and a garden tour to anticipate.

Friday, 11 August 2017

I mostly just finished a mystery I was reading, except for a pleasant interlude when good  friend Judy S. and her spouse Larry came to see our lilies and to examine our deer fence.  I did only a minimum of gardening (fertilized containers) and took no photos.

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Judy appreciating the Stipa gigantea

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and the Melianthus major’s peanut butter scent.

The J’s sent over some freshly cleaned and cooked crab that Jay himself had caught that day on his boat.  I so appreciate not being given a live crab!

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before they were cleaned and cooked and turned into crab legs and shared

Allan, a much better householder than me, decided it was high time to defrost the refrigerator.  (It is old and frosts up quickly.)

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The mystery was Double Booked for Death (Black Cat Bookshop Series #1) by Ali Brandon.  I liked it well enough to order the sequel, even though I much prefer when cats do not help solve mysteries.  At least this one was not a talking cat.

We had our weekly garden club dinner at the Cove with Dave and Melissa.

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in the entry foyer at the Cove

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rhubarb cake

Tomorrow: The Astoria garden tour, at last!

 

 

 

 

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