Posts Tagged ‘Ilwaco Saturday Market’

Saturday, 5 March 2018

We attended the annual Ilwaco Children’s Parade (yesterday’s post).  Allan was at the beginning, downtown, and I was at the Port end of the parade.  Neither one of us made it to the boatyard to get photos with the boats as a backdrop.  A breakdown in communication.

I was pleased that Jenna (Queen La De Da, our good friend and the parade organizer) had put up signs protecting our street planters.

And yet…

Along Howerton Avenue, dog daisies had bloomed for the parade.

We have finally managed to get some perennials going in the Freedom Market garden.

Here comes the parade:

After the parade, we each went to the opening of the Ilwaco Saturday Market at the port, which will take place each Saturday between now and the end of September.

Allan’s photos:


my photos:

I popped into Time Enough Books.

I must read the Angry Chef book!

However, my obsession with watching Gardeners’ World online is greatly reducing my reading time.

What is missing in the photo below?

Nigel and Montagu Don, of course!

This is a must have book for a dog book collection.

Cats were well represented:

I hurried home because I had things to do in the garden.  And yet…I have a problem.  All I want to do is watch one episode after another of Gardeners’ World online.  I am finding them on youtube and another video site called dailymotion. Three new books came in the mail today and yet….except for bathtime, I watch Gardeners’ World instead of reading.

I hope I don’t start watching GW instead of blogging.

The cats stayed indoors for as long as I did.



Gardeners’ World

I felt guilty about not gardening.  Allan helped by saying, as he made some toasty sandwiches, “You are waiting for lunch, then you’ll be eating lunch, and then you’ll be letting it settle.”  Sounded like a good enough set of excuses.

relaxing AND informative

Nigel! My dog, Bertie Woofter, used to make just that face.

With GW presenter Carol Klein, I visited the Logan Botanic Garden in Scotland.  Amazing; you can view it here.

Today, I watched several episodes from 2015 (and one accidentally from 2016) before venturing out into the garden. Finally, in mid-afternoon, I did get stuck into one gardening job.  (Allan had gone shopping over the river.)

The big beds are weedy but still give a reasonably good impression.

I now have an elegant blue wall at the end of the garden, like the glorious one that was famously in the Linda Cochran garden on Bainbridge Island.

Ok, it is actually a blue tarp over a huge stack of crab pots next door.  I like it much better than last year’s brown tarp.

I had decided to do the weediest area first, which I left till the very last in 2017: the hillocks in the Bogsy Wood.

before: 3 PM

4 PM

4:05 PM

Our Kathleen came by just then to give me a start of rudbeckia for the Shelburne Hotel garden.  We visited outdoors for about fifteen minutes and then I got back to the project.

5:30 PM looking east

5:30 PM looking west

camassias on the edge of the Bogsy Wood

Skooter; both cats kept an eye on my project.

a nice start of rudbeckia for the Shelburne

I was glad to accomplish a goodly amount and rewarded myself with some more episodes of Gardeners’ World. I told Allan that if I lived alone, I would stop watching all of our usual favourite telly shows and watch nothing BUT GW till I have gotten through all such material available online.  “That’s crazy talk!” said Allan.

Be still, my heart—Monty, Nigel, and compost bins:

Have I shared this clip of a physically disabled woman’s garden?

This evening’s shows included an inspirational greening of a Liverpool neighbourhood, part of a campaign called Greening Grey Britain. (Sorry, cannot find a stand alone video clip. You will find it 18 minutes in to this episode.)

And I got to go on a tour of the Lost Gardens of Heligan, about which I have read at least two books.  I had forgotten that it was a hurricane knocking down trees that first revealed the lost garden there.

We have two more days off.  I am sure to be torn between watching gardening and actually gardening.



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Yesterday, in a photo caption, I mis-identified the Ilwaco Fire Dept as Long Beach. No idea why!  Fortunately, astute blog reader Our Kathleen caught the error.  

Saturday, 23 September 2017

I thought I should go to the Saturday Market for a few photos for Discover Ilwaco, since the market has only two more weekends to go and might get rained out on the last one.  I had not been to the market much this summer because of my sore heel.  Now that it is feeling better, I can walk without constant pain.

I decided to not disturb my neighbor Rudder with pets.

Approaching the market, I noted that the tall ships were tall.

De Asis produce

two tall ships

Allan had signed on for tomorrow’s “battle sail” on one of these ships.

Mandolin Pete with a guitar instead outside Don Nisbett’s gallery

busy market day

a market patron

two little cuties

I was eager to get home to my garden, but when I did, I found that going to the market had sapped my energy, so I accomplished little.  Allan worked on painting his shed.

before (Allan’s photo)

Allan painting his shed.

I accomplished one thing, with Allan’s help a bit: digging out the snail chewed hostas.  I am giving up on them.  Almost.  I chopped off a little piece of each to try to grow in a drier spot.

can’t look at this anymore

I was then inspired to sift some compost, so the day was not wasted.

In the late afternoon, rounding the corner to dump some sifted compost along Willows Loop West, I was stopped by a beacon of light.

It was the glowing of Kniphofia ‘Earliest of All’, an ironically late blooming kniphofia that Todd gave me.  It is spectacular.

Kniphofia ‘Earliest of All’ illuminated by late afternoon sun

Kniphofia ‘Earliest of All’

lovely compost, not sifted ultra fine because it is going on a perennial bed.

I finally decided this horrible heather had to go. OUT.

Allan’s end of day photo

Sunday, 24 Sept 2017

Ed Strange stopped by to pick up the hostas.  His hosta patch is glorious and mine will be happier there.

Ed’s Jackson

Goodbye Sum and Substance and the other one

Allan departed to walk to the port, first to tour a Tall Ship and then to go on a sail.  It would, however, not be a battle sail; he had gotten a call this morning that their gunpowder had not been delivered, so the event was now an hour shorter Adventure Sail.  That will be tomorrow’s post.

I had company at noon ish: Dear friend Judy S., her spouse Larry and sister Rosalie.  We had a gratifying tour of the garden (because they like it) and a good talk in the shady campfire area.

Rosalie, Larry, Judy

I dug this hardy fuchsia out of the (now compost mulched) former hosta bed and gave it to Judy.


I had a surge of energy and got ALL my ladies in waiting planted.  It helps a lot that my foot is hurting much less.

Asclepias fascicularis

Asclepias speciosa

Eryngium proteiflorum (went in by the garden boat)

The strawberries are trying to take over my would-be scree garden.

Eryngium padanifolium

Chocolate Shogun is near the base of the lady.

Astilbe ‘Chocolate Shogun’

My Metapanax delavayi from Xera also went into the former hosta bed.

Metapanax delavayi berries

Metapanax delavayi berries—thrilling!

I sifted more compost.  Frosty stayed close by.

I got the third bin sifted and emptied and put new newspaper down at the base (as a weed barrier).

Now I have two full bins of old debris, and will start layering the brown with new green material in the empty bin.

I took the last sifted wheelbarrow load of compost to a weedy path on the east side of the fire circle and proceeded to weed in preparation for mulching.

weeded and ready, but….

I remembered that I had thought this might be a cool spot to have a pond, probably one made out of a big, and I mean REALLY big, tub. because tree roots would prevent digging.  A tub like the ones I saw in this garden in Portland.

I stared at the garden bed for at least ten minutes, just trying to decide.  Big tub pond here? With a bench around it maybe? But where to get a big tub like that? And it is far from electricity (if one wanted a burbler in it).

to tub or not to tub

A big tub with a curved bench in front, where people could sit some distance from the campfire, would be amazing.

I finally dumped the load of compost onto the old hosta bed because I did not want to waste it on a bed that might get transformed.

old hosta bed with ALL the mulch

Allan returned, well satisfied with his Tall Ships sailing experience.  As a reward for much garden and painting progress, and because the evening was almost windless, we had a campfire dinner.

It has been an enormous relief to get my home gardening energy back.  One large factor has been that my foot is hurting much less than during midsummer, when it made it impossible to do much on days off but sit and kvetch and read.





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Saturday, 16 September 2017

Much as I wanted to just stay home in my garden, we felt morally compelled to attend this Indivisible North Coast Oregon event in Astoria:

“Bring your signs and American flags, and show support for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which Trump has vowed to end. Sometimes called dreamers, these young people were brought here by their parents when their children were in some cases infants.

INCO is holding this non-violent, peaceful event in accordance with the law. We ask participants to not engage in any act of violence or violate any applicable law, to avoid confrontations with those who disagree, to obey the orders of law enforcement authorities, and to follow the guidance of INCO’s coordinators at this event. Our goal remains to defend democracy and build community.”

an early arrival with some extra signs

Allan’s photo

Allan’s photo

Allan’s photo

(An aside: Filling in letters makes a sign read better.)

Allan’s photo

I was hoping more would turn out for this very specific protest. (Allan’s photo)

We did cover all four corners. (Allan’s photo)

Allan’s photo

Joan from KMUN community radio was interviewing for a show.

I stood by a woman from South Bend, Stephanie, whom I had already noticed on our local Facebook groups.  With a shared passion for the rally and a love of cats and gardening, we had much to discuss.

Stephanie’s photo.  This sign has proved appropriate for a number of different rallies.

We got lots of approving honks and thumbs up and waves.

Allan’s photo

Allan’s photo

The driver (and the dog?) gave us a thumbs up.

Allan’s photo

We also got some thumbs down, at least one “Fuck you!”, and one middle aged white man who leaned out the passenger window practically frothing at the mouth as he yelled at us, “Get out! GET OUT!”

An enormous cruise ship was docked by the town.  One gentleman cruiser strolling by said “You are all welcome to move to Canada.”  He was not being sarcastic, not being one of those “Love it or leave it!” types.  He really was from Canada and agreed with us.

The rally, scheduled for one hour, went on for an hour and a half.  We were almost the last to go, except for Steve whose task it was to pick up all extra signs.

Steve and Allan

Two more events were to follow the rally, going on until 8 PM: A film about immigration and a Celebration of Hispanic Culture.  From an article in the Daily Astorian: “The Hispanic Council had considered canceling this year’s heritage celebration in light of current politics.

“There’s not much for the Hispanic community to celebrate this year,” said Jorge Gutierrez, the council’s executive director.

But, he and others ultimately concluded it was the right time to come together. Besides, the folk dance group had been practicing hard.  ”  The event had the highest turnout of any council event for the past few years.  Many from the rally stayed through the day but….I was longing to get home and do some gardening.

Allan and I did think we might have lunch at the Blue Scorcher before departing Astoria.

Some handsome houses on the way:

I love the flags on the porch.

line of coleus by the sidewalk

hillside garden

Above the Blue Scorcher/Fort George Brewery building, I walked through the public garden cared for by Jessica Schlief.


hardy fuchsia and ornamental oregano


Meanwhile, Allan had looked at the historical area next door, which tells a terrible story when considered from the point of view of the first people to live here.  I find this sign quite disturbing, except for the Garden of Eden part.  Allan points out that it was “written in a different age”.

A more multicultural sort of history:


We went down the ramp inside the brewery to get to the Blue Scorcher…which was simply too crowded to find a seat.

In the Blue Scorcher: Perhaps the cruise ship accounted for busy restaurants; Fort George was also full.

We decided to walk five or so blocks west to accomplish a goal: trying out the food trucks.

a sign along the way

The Garden of Surging Waves is also on the way.

Of the food trucks, two were closed, and one had a limited menu.

Fortunately, I especially wanted to try the Snackle Box.

When I admired the paint colour, the owner told me that she had had a house and a car painted that blue, her “happy colour”, and that someday the Snackie Box will become a reading and writing shed in her garden.

Bánh mì (Vietnamese sandwich) and lumpia (a Filipino treat).

A spam treat evoked Hawaii. (Allan’s photo)

I am glad we had that delightful meal before the weather turned autumnal and blustery.

Now for the five block walk back to our van.  I did wish I had brought my cane on our spontaneous lunch excursion.

street planters including a ginko tree (background)

We saw a garden by the Senior Center that spoke to me of Jessica Schlief.  She later told me that she does not do this one.  A volunteer from the Senior Center works on this steep garden by attaching a rope to their van, parked above!  She told me there’s an article about it, and I found it here. It is an excellent read.  Excerpt: “There are five tow ropes. Three are attached to a metal guardrail and the fourth to the open door of the Astoria Senior Center bus. The fifth is wrapped around Larry Allen’s torso to form a harness.

“At 75 years old, I’m finally getting to do what I wanted to do,” he says as he bends down to pat the dirt around a patch of young sunflowers.

Over the past year, Allen has built a garden perched above the Senior Center, turning a rocky, weedy wall into a tiny gem.”

Allan’s photo

Allan’s photo

Allan’s photo

container at the Senior Center door

Allan’s photo

a sign stuck in at a parking lot by the Astoria co op

Allan’s photo

Allan noticed a garden shed high up on a hill over where we parked.

Driving down Marine Drive toward the bridge, I was amused but could not get a good photo of a cargo ship called Ultra Bulk.

Cruise ship people enjoying the River Walk

The cruise ship dwarfed an old waterfront hotel.

Finally we arrived back in Ilwaco.  Instead of going straight home, I felt that (while Allan ran a shed-repair related errand)  I needed some September market photos for the Discover Ilwaco Facebook page.  Could be my last chance if the rest of the month has windy Saturdays.

Ilwaco Saturday Market

Salt Pub

My black lab, Bertie Woofter, used to make that same face.

Oh! The port office hanging baskets are gone.

Don Nisbett Gallery’s baskets still look fine.

De Asis Produce

On the way home, I got to pet Rudder next door.

I was too worn out to accomplish any great gardening plans.

east gate view of back garden

All I did was place a tarp and a pallet behind a tree for the new wood pile.

Frosty helped with the tarp folding.

Skooter in the gear shed yard next door.

the last of the old firewood area

Allan continued to tear off shakes and to putty old nail holes.

At dusk, we had a fire before the rain.

hardy fuchsias at dusk

roasted corn on the cob for dinner (Allan’s photo)

If Sunday or Monday bring rain, we will have three more days off.  We are entering an easy stretch of work, post-tourist season and pre-fall clean up and bulb time.







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Friday, 25 August 2017

I felt more like sleeping, followed by blogging, rather than weeding and planting.  My first excuse was that the weather was in the mid 70s.

Smokey helped with blogging…

…which immediately exhausted him.

I felt guilty about not gardening till Allan told me I was resting my foot.  He watered the post office garden, for which we had run out of time last night, and saw this:

Grasshopper says it’s late summer.

In the late afternoon, our friend and former client Lorna arrived for a planned visit with her son, daughter in law, and grandchildren.  Lorna used to own Andersen’s RV park and now lives in Seattle.

Ellie heading straight to the bogsy woods to see if the fairy doors were still there.

Lorna’s observant son commented on the ‘Seashells’ cosmos….

and the pink turtleheads.

Lorna noticed the bright hips on Rosa moyesii.

entering the bogsy woods (Allan’s photo)

When we got to the bogsy woods bridge, Lorna’s son asked if the river was right past the willows.  I told him that was a most insightful question because it used to be riverbank before the port was built two blocks out on fill in the 50s.  He said it feels like the river should be there.  I liked that.  (If the river were right there, I’d have a view point clipped out through the willows.)

Ellie revisiting the fairy doors, which she had last seen in 2012.

The children loved the Impatiens balsamina, a noxious but delightful weed whose seeds pop with vigor.  I grow a tiny patch of it in the middle of the garden for the amusement of visitors (and I don’t let it escape).

Grown ups like it, too.

it was noted that the cup tree has a resident (one snail)

The dogwood propellors were a hit. My hand was unsteady.

Before they left, they had to smell the 7 Up Plant (Stachys ‘Hidalgo) and the peanut butter plant (Melianthus major).  Lorna told me later that when they left for home on Sunday, Josh exlaimed, “I want to see the peanut butter plant!”

After this excellent visit, it was time to go to

The Cove Restaurant

for our North Beach Garden Gang dinner with Dave and Melissa.

a painted rock found outside

Flowers in the foyer were provided by Todd, including some glads from corms I had given him.

Ed Strange and Todd joined us for dinner.  Todd brought zucchinis for all; his dad has now grown and given away 950 zukes (a specially nice one with a thin, tender peel) this summer so far, from 54 plants.

delicious dinner salad


Ed puts off an incoming phone call.

Saturday, 26 September 2017

After much sleep, followed by news reading, I felt we should go to the Saturday market, as I had taken no August photos of it for the Discover Ilwaco Facebook page—partly because we’d had events on at least one Saturday and partly because of my sore foot.  Today was my last chance for August market photos.   We procrastinated till almost three because the weather was in the upper 70s.

I thought the gardens looked good as we approached.

looking west on Howerton Avenue

This dog did not like hats!

Once I removed my hat, he was a happy, friendly dog.

Port Office garden

Allan’s photo

Allan’s photo

mushroom (toadstool?) solar lights at Suzy Q’s Magical Glass

Salt Hotel and Pub and OleBob’s Café

tiny birdhouse ornaments from Wood Turnings

hot and windy


Allan bought some peaches.

Allan’s photo

These are marshmallow guns. (Allan’s photo)  I am mystified as to how they work.

At home again, I did the tiniest bit of gardening by weeding some planters and adding worm castings to the top of the soil.

Frosty helping

Devery arrived home.  I gave her some zukes and a cuke (and a pepper) and she gave us half of a blackberry pie that she had made from blackberries growing against the next door garage.

Devery’s home made pie

Of course, I then had to go next door to see Royal.

Royal seemed happy to see me.

Devery’s begonias

Frosty, who had followed me over, was eager to make friends with Royal.  Both Frosty and his brother Smokey grew up with dogs and quite like nice ones.


We heard voices out front, and there were the J’s, with new puppy Julius Caesar.

Jay, Julius, and Junior (who also got petted)

In the background, you can see that Allan has loaded his boat in preparation for boating tomorrow.

I did manage to run four of the sprinklers in the evening.

Skooter demands a toll of petting as I go to turn on the faucet.

Allan went out to work for two hours.

pruning at CoHo Charters (before)


And watering at the Ilwaco Community Building, which can only be done when it is closed.  Someone repaired the concrete that was broken last week.

Sunday, 27 August 2017

Not only was the weather 79 hot degrees, but I had an almost overdue book which I needed to finish.

This certainly spoke to me, as my Social Security will be less than that:

at a campaign rally

I didn’t have much left to read in that excellent book and could not resist reading another one, a gift from Allan that was as much photos as text, The Making of Dunkirk (the recent film).

This inspired some reading of articles online.  I think this short video is especially good and moving.

I did finally go out and managed to plant all of four plants.

In the background is my bright new Thuja ‘Forever Goldie’ from Westport Winery nursery.

And a ‘Full Moon’ Japanese maple from Westport Winery, probably not in enough sun…but in the place where I can see it from the front window.

The wind had knocked tall plants askew in the front garden.

Veronicastrum now sideways.

cardoon at eye level instead of towering overhead

Skooter avoiding the sun

Somehow the many garden projects I intended to do today, like moving a big tatty daylily to make room for more new plants and saving some poppy seeds into a bucket did not happen.  When I walked back to the bogsy woods to arrange a sprinkler, half an hour before sunset, I noticed sheets of bindweed on the east fence by the neighboring gear shed.  I definitely would have addressed THAT problem if I had seen it earlier in the weekend.  Now it will have to wait four more days.

Pam Fleming, Seaside gardener, sent this photo of a charming bouquet picked by flower expert Prissy:

photo by Pam Fleming

Tomorrow: Allan’s Sunday boating



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Saturday, 1 July 2017

We took advantage of much of what our town had to offer today.  Earlier in the week, while weeding the port gardens to get them spiffing for today’s events, I had had that feeling of being smitten with love for this little town.  The first Saturday in July is always special here, with probably the biggest Saturday market of the year followed by a fireworks extravaganza at the port in the evening.

Ilwaco Saturday Market

Knowing that the Pink Poppy Bakery booth would be at the market today is part of what drew us down there.  (Baker Maddy is pregnant and therefore not doing every week of market this summer.)


Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’ in one of our port gardens (Allan’s photo)


Allan’s photo


The lines were long at the food booths.



plants for sale


at one of the plant booths


the cutest booth of all


port office garden


tied as a result of recent windstorm


Purly Shell Fiber Arts spinning demonstration


Frilly lamps at Suzy Q’s Magical Glass


Salt Hotel and Pub



booths with a view


Charter fishing


fresh produce


Northwest Naturals


Northwest Naturals


another garden booth


Blue Coast Farm


another booth featuring plants.


Pink Poppy: I acquired two slices of the marble chocolate cake, second from left.

As I walked home, I sadly contemplated the really bad pruning in the Lost Garden.




Why do inexperienced pruners feel they just have to hack at shrubs and trees?


I paused next door to pet Old Man Rudder.

At home, I fortified myself with a slice of Maddy’s pound cake in order to accomplish an afternoon gardening  project.  But that’s all there is about gardening in this post.  We’re going to jump straight to 8 PM and the evening’s events.

Fireworks at the Port of Ilwaco

The evening’s festivities started with a special bonus: a performance of renowned Astoria band Holiday Friends in the courtyard at Salt Hotel.



Holiday Friends.  They were good.


I was pleased to see books at the table next to me.


Allan’s photo, featuring our curbside garden


appreciative audience


Allan’s photo


Allan’s photo


Salt Pub’s kitchen pass shows that the restaurant was busy.


I popped into Time Enough Books…


…to say hi to owner Karla and to store mascot Scout.


in Time Enough Books


port office garden


Don Nisbett Art Gallery


Our dear friends Jenna and Don

Darling Jenna made both me and Allan delicious tacos, saving us from standing in line at the popular food booths that had stayed on after Saturday market.


Thank you, Jenna!


classic fairway treat


a growing crowd as dusk settles in


Smoked Salmon Chowder (Allan’s photo)


This chowder is delicious (Allan’s photo)


good accessorizing

Allan walked out on the docks and gleaned some lovely photos of evening at the marina.





Aallotar, built in 1926 or 7



I found my favourite spot for taking fireworks photos, one of the bridges to the docks.


view of the marina

High tide made the reflections especially good this year.





Allan, more agile and adventurous and unlikely to fall off the dock in the dark, ranged from the port office deck to the docks to get his photos.





after racing down the stairs from the deck (which was not open to the public) on the way to the docks











the grand finale

After the fireworks comes the traffic jam…


traffic backed with personal fireworks up on the hill

We are among the lucky ones because we only have to walk three blocks to get home.

Tomorrow: back to the usual subject with our gardening weekend.

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Saturday, 10 June 2017

At last, after skipping several weeks, I did walk two blocks (with the motivation of finding a couple of tomato plants) to

Ilwaco Saturday Market





Northwest Natural made a waterfall of their concrete leaves.



asparagus from De Asis Farm


all shopped out


the cutest booth



Our port office garden (and Basket Case Greenhouse baskets)


The Wood Elf



I did get three more tomatoes and walked home in pouring rain, which made me happy because it means less watering.


At home, because of the rain, I took the time for the book I had been wanting to read in one sitting.  It is the story of the author’s mum and dad’s  life in England from about 1930 to 1970.


Oh, how wonderful it was, and thanks so much to my “imaginary” (online) friend Lynn for recommending it to me.  She got to see an advance showing of the film made from the book, which will be released in the USA next October.  As she said, “There’s gardening!”


Installing an Anderson shelter in the garden.  I just love that they say “antirrhinums” for snapdragons.



the terror of WWII bombing, laying down flat in a cabbage field


the garden

For beautiful illustrations, not deliberately off angle snaps, I do advise you to get the book.  Oh how I cried at the end.  I am counting the months till the film.


in love with this book

And then I went out to plant my tomatoes and pepper plants for the greenhouse and got them all done, just in time to go to a book reading at

Time Enough Books



our bouquet for the event


author Kathleen Alcalá

We were the only ones who showed up!  That made me sad; however, after the reading we had a good long conversation about the world’s problems (which we did not solve) with bookstore owner Karla and the author and her spouse, and bought a copy of the book.  (I’m halfway through a library copy.  If it were winter, I’d have read it in two days.)


Karla and the author and her spouse

There was one thing I did not like about the book so far: One short passage in which the author says she does not like to see “overweight people buying pallets of food at Costco.”  I took the opportunity to recommend that she read Body of Truth by Harriet Brown without chastising her for her “People of Walmart” judgement.  I had written the title down for her.  She seemed open to reading it.



At 7:30 PM, the light outside was gorgeous.


looking west, Time Enough Books garden


poppy and penstemon


looking east


coming home


evening light


greenhouse: messy but tomatoes are in!

Sunday, 11 June 2017

The main feature of today was the glorious Astoria Pride Parade.  That will be tomorrow’s post because it deserves to stand alone.  Meanwhile, here are some photos taken while we were in Astoria.

As we parked, we saw this shopkeeper decorating.


Allan’s photo

Some of the curbside gardens on Marine Drive:



the best one…


by Jessica Schlief


O Jessica, what is this?


Jessica’s garden


poppies and cerinthe

The other curbside gardens could not compare to Jessica’s floriferous display…


with salal


and just plain weeds

We joined the parade.  A few non parade photos as we walked along the Riverwalk.




trolley stop

I don’t want to add this old age story to the parade post:  During the parade, Allan was on his own taking photos.  After falling back to the end to get photos of the entire procession, I could not keep up with the parade and with five blocks to go till the rally, I was way behind.


The end of the parade is now the people far far in the distance walking away from me.


the pleasant view with freight ships lined up waiting for the tide

My slowness was rewarded because as I approached the rally, Darcelle was just getting off the trolley, and, in fact, I got a hug from her. (I’ve seen the grand Darcelle show a couple of times when it has come to Long Beach.)


The famous Darcelle, left, longtime performer from Portland, Oregon

After the rally, we walked back to town.  Very very slowly.


Allan’s photo


Allan’s photo of the tour boat that goes all the way upriver


Allan’s photo


Allan’s photo


Allan’s photo

A young man told me I could have taken the trolley.  But it has a big step to the ground and even with the step box that they provide, it is very tough with knee problems.  Easier to walk.  Although I did wonder if I would make it and I reminisced poignantly about how, not so many years ago, Seattle Carol would spend the day in Astoria walking all up and down the hills or the whole length of the Riverwalk and back just for fun.  In those days, I lived up to my last name, Walker.


Allan’s photo



the cute bus that goes with the riverboat tour (Allan’s photos)



Allan’s photo

I was pleased to make it to downtown.


in a shop window (Allan’s photo)

And I was even more pleased to find something I had forgotten about: The Astoria Sunday Market was in session.



Every time we saw someone with something rainbow, we exchanged “Happy Pride!” greetings. I found it most joyous.





Allan’s photo


We bought a hummingbird sculpture.


Allan’s photo



At the market, we encountered our friends Pam of the Seaside gardens and Sean and his darling dog.


Sean’s photo


Allan is in this photo, too.


plants for sale (Allan’s photo)

Then, I was so tired and we were hungry.  We ate at one of my favourite Astoria restaurants.





Pasta Puttenesca for me


squash ravioli for Allan


back to where we began


Allan’s photo

At home, I thought all I would be able to do was sit down and process photos.  And then, with the help of a handful of wake up beans, I managed to plant most of the new ladies in waiting that were slated for my own garden.




this evening (and the three on the bench are Allan’s not mine!)

Meanwhile, Allan mowed three lawns: Ours, Devery’s, and the J’s.  That is not unusual becuase he does seem to have boundless energy.

Tomorrow: The Pride Parade itself.


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Saturday, 6 May, part two

Ilwaco Saturday Market

After we photographed the annual children’s parade, we strolled through the Saturday market.

Turning the corner from Howerton to Waterfront Way, we found a bustling scene.

Double J and the Boys

flowering baskets

Allan’s photo

our favourite local place; in this case, “family friendly” means kids are welcome in the pub.

Some market day, I will take time for a meal on the Salt deck.

Allan’s photo

at Olive and Garlic way

I stood in a short line to get two slices of Lime Bundt cake from Pink Poppy.


Allan’s photo

Allan’s photo

Tipping musician Peter at the Don Nisbett Gallery (Allan’s photo)

You can see in the background lots of people loading onto boats.

from the port office deck (Allan’s photos)

Pink Poppy

fishing derby (Allan’s photo)

Allan’s photo

Today was the Blessing of the Fleet.  If I were not so tired from work, with much gardening awaiting me at home, I might have gone out for a free boat ride.  Allan took some photos from the docks:

Flowers will be cast into the water in memory of loved ones, and the Coast Guard helicopter will fly over the boats and drop a wreath.

heading out to the Columbia Bar

home in the garden

Before the children’s parade (yesterday’s post), I had admired the dogwood from the kitchen window…

dogwood from the kitchen window

and had planned an afternoon accomplishment: getting all my Nicotiana langsdorfii planted.

They are the soft leaved plants on the left side of the table.

By 6:45, I had 33 Nicotiana and some perennials planted and the table reorganized…

and a little raised garden extension made…and had pulled a gluteal muscle wrangling two heavy buckets of wet soil…

…because I did not learn from the first bucket that I should scoop half the second bucket into another container before trying to lift it. This pulled muscle plagued me for the next few days but I won’t keep mentioning it.

The Nicotiana were planted by just hacking out spaces in weedy areas.  Rather a sad but necessary method when this far behind.

In evening light, first flowers…but not a good photo…of my rhododendron from Steve and John!

The Cove Restaurant

We had our North Beach Garden Gang dinner tonight because Our Kathleen is in town.

I had bought some gladiolus weeks ago at Costco because the colour combo appealed to me.  But I don’t like glads and could not figure out where to plant them!  I managed to pass them off to Todd for his cutting garden.  I’ll put a few in my garden boat, perhaps.

We all have compatible ideas about the world’s problems.  We were unable to solve them.

Chef Sondra’s mom’s recipe. lasagne, made Sunday’s lunch as well.

cinnamon chocolate cake to share (Allan’s photo)

art on the wall

and Allan’s photo of an amazing moon as we departed.

Sunday, 7 May 2017

Just weeding, and tiniest bit of planting.  I managed to actually focus on just the west bed…

I did not get it done, though.  If I could have gone for one more hour, I could have erased it from the work board.  Instead, I had to stop because….my big toe hurt.  This is an odd thing that happens sometimes (gout??), and it is amazing how one big toe can make you want to first, take off your sock and second, bring gardening to a close for the evening.  (An annoying wind did not help my fortitude.)

In better news, I wore my knee brace (the “Unloader”) all day.  Summer weight clothing made it easier to wear.  It worked a treat.

At my request, Allan pruned a couple of dead branches out of the tatty old ornamental plum…



Allan saw our kind neighbour Jared dump some extra gravel in one of “our” potholes.

Some photos in the evening before going inside at the early time of 6 PM:

West bed needs another hour or so of attention.


Persicaria bistorta superba

Only a few snail holes so far on Hosta ‘Sum and Substance’

bogsy wood….unweeded but with camassia

Last year’s new bogsy wood bed has disappeared under velvet grass.

too windy for a campfire

bogsy wood edge with still unclipped hydrangea

blue corydalis and pulmonaria

At least I got some other pruning done included almost all the many winter-killed branches on the hardy fuchsias.

my mum’s favourite rhododendron that I brought home from the Golden Sands garden last year.

I do not know its name.

more camassia

Allan in the far distance after dumping the last of my three heaping wheelbarrow of weeds.

Oh, how I wish I had several days to finish the weeding—at least four would do it—but tomorrow, work calls again.




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Friday, 2 September 2016

All I wanted to do today was finish reading Lab Girl.


Lab Girl by Hope Jahren

I did not know this about willows, even though I have some big ones on the wild edges of my garden:


I learned so much about plants in the short botanical chapters that are interspersed with her personal story.

A wonderful passage about helping one’s friends:


Because I know the transcendent value of loyalty, I’ve been to places that a person can’t get to any other way.”

I so identify with this, which is why I cut my hair with garden shears:

There were certain things in life that Bill would go to almost any length to avoid, and one was going to a barbershop. The very idea of the physical intimacy inherent to the hair-cutting process overwhelmed him.

This reminds me of the experience of being self employed for 40 years (and why I want to postpone knee surgery because of the need to work and make money):


I did do something for the garden: painted more bamboo poles, and made a couple of excursions of garden admiration.

Kniphofia 'Earliest of All'

Kniphofia ‘Earliest of All’

Vigorous passiflora

Vigorous passiflora

Finally I found the energy to cut back the big Baptisia in the front garden.  Still debating about taking it out.

It's not wonderful after it blooms.

It’s not wonderful after it blooms.

Lots of tetrapanax runners...wonderful or terrible?

Lots of tetrapanax runners…wonderful or terrible?

enormously tall Sanguisorba, probably 'Pink Elephant'

enormously tall Sanguisorba, probably ‘Pink Elephant’

Skooter came to help with my clipping.

Skooter came to help with my clipping.

gleaming light at 6 PM

gleaming light at 6 PM

At night, we watched most of The 1940s House.  I do feel that I lived during the blitz, in some strange way.

Saturday, 3 September 2016

Allan had left early in the morning for a boating event in Ocean Shores (tomorrow’s post).  J9 came by in the very early afternoon to meet Skooter, and immediately sat on the ground to commune with him.  She used to have a big orange cat named Rufus.  I was so distracted by our conversation and by rushing around to pick a bouquet that I was ten minutes late to meet Ann (from Portland, the Amateur Botanist) for a late lunch at Salt Pub.

flowers for Salt Hotel

flowers for Salt Hotel

new Waterfront Way sign for Salt

new Waterfront Way sign for Salt

the view from our table

the view from our table


caesar salad with kale, and crab hushpuppies

caesar salad with kale, and crab hushpuppies

We finished our leisurely lunch and conversation on many important and scintillating topics in time to see the last 20 minutes of the market and to get treats from Pink Poppy Bakery.

Pink Poppy Maddy had been reading a book.

Pink Poppy Maddy had been reading a book.

Ann buys some Swedish traveling cake.

Ann buys some Swedish traveling cake.

Ann framed in a booth of mirrors.

Ann framed in a booth of mirrors.

the darling Wild For Lavender booth

the darling Wild For Lavender booth

The English Nursery booth

The English Nursery booth

some mossy art

some mossy art

Ann departed to drive back to Portland via Astoria and I went home to putter in the garden a bit.

Skooter joined me.

Skooter joined me.

showing off his glorious tail

showing off his glorious tail

It rather magically catches the light.

It rather magically catches the light.

the transcendent tail

the transcendent tail




We had had this much glorious rain.

We had had this much glorious rain.

I could take almost as many photos of Kniphofia ‘Earliest of All’ as of Skooter’s tail, and there is a resemblance.


Kniphofia 'Earliest of All' (not early at all)

Kniphofia ‘Earliest of All’ (not early at all here; Todd says that in North Carolina, it bloomed for him in February)

Clematis 'Rooguchi'

Clematis ‘Rooguchi’

tall rose, fuchsia, leycesteria

tall rose, fuchsia, leycesteria

the first three bamboo poles that began my spray painting frenzy

the first three bamboo poles that began my spray painting frenzy


with Stipa gigantea

After pulling one wheelbarrow full of weeds, I allowed myself to go indoors and begin a cozy “Farmer’s Market” mystery (Farm Fresh Murder, the first in a series by Paige Shelton).  Allan returned, and we finished watching The 1940s House.

It it so very good.

It is so very good.

Rather amazingly, because of the Labor Day holiday and the good solid rain, we still have two more days off work.


1995 (age 71)

September 3: Rain is forecast so I hurried and picked up the onions that I laid in the “corn patch” to cure.  For now they are in the garage in the wheelbarrow until I have time to sort them.


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Lorna, former owner Andersen’s RV Park, sent us two guest photos from New York City:

Lorna: "I thought of you each time I saw a planter. And I found myself stopping to see if there were any obvious signs of pilfering. Didn't see any. Think passers by are all in a hurry to get somewhere. "

Lorna: “I thought of you each time I saw a planter. And I found myself stopping to see if there were any obvious signs of pilfering. Didn’t see any. Think passers by are all in a hurry to get somewhere. “

I told Lorna that we seem to not have enough heat here to grow the wonderful sweet potato vine.

I told Lorna that we seem to not have enough heat here to grow the wonderful sweet potato vine.  Where is that one in the front emerging from?? Hanging by one tiny stem?

‘Friday, 26 August 2016


Skooter on the south cat door platform

Skooter on the south cat door platform

Skooter's view

Skooter’s view

All I managed to do for the garden was to paint some more bamboo poles and then install them in the cool of the evening, and paint the wooden bowls for a new project.



Allan had already drilled holes in the bowls.

Allan had already drilled holes in the bowls.

Saturday, 27 August 2016

We had blissfully cool misty weather again.  You could almost call it drizzle…but not quite.  I asked Allan to go to Saturday Market for our Pink Poppy Bakery treats because going to market felt too peopley to me today.

Allan’s photos:

next door, our friend Rudder of Starvation Alley Cranberry Farm

next door, our friend Rudder of Starvation Alley Cranberry Farm

He delivered my bouquet to Salt Hotel.

He delivered my bouquet to Salt Hotel.

Salt Hotel lobby

Salt Hotel lobby

at the Wood Turner's nook

at the Wood Turner’s workshop

by the Port Office

by the Port Office

Our Kathleen was there, buying some smoked salmon chowder.

Our Kathleen was there, buying some smoked salmon chowder.

De Asis Farm

De Asis Farm

some darling doggies

some darling doggies

Maddy of Pink Poppy Bakery and Our Kathleen

Maddy of Pink Poppy Bakery and Our Kathleen

on the way home

on the way home

Kathleen came to visit me for awhile and got to meet Skooter.  Lazy snoozing Skooter did not want to come down the cat ramp so I gave him a push from indoors.






Allan worked on the bowl project.


After my visit with Kathleen, I turned to a new book (having finished the excellent Shrill by Lindy West).  I loved the first season of the World War II British series, Home Fires.  It was based on a non fiction booked called Jambusters, republished here as Home Fires to tie in with the telly show about the role of the Women’s Institute in English and Welsh villages.  (Scotland had a different organization than the WI.)


serve all

The pacifist nature of the WI was not addressed in the tv show.



I recommend that all food gardeners that I know read this book for the chapter called Digging for Victory. It is absolutely fascinating.

flowersI was interested to learn that the poorer households got a larger share of evacuees from the cities.



Anyone who likes to put food up or who has memories of their grandma canning food will enjoy the chapter about canning and preserving, which was done on a grand scale and often while actually at risk of bombing.


Fascinating that there were few onions available. They had previously been imported from France. Onions did not grow well in the UK climate so an onion was a precious commodity.

This passage about games played at the end of the WI meetings gets across how hard the women worked at that time. I was amazed to read that a lot of the country villages did not get electricity and plumbing until the late 1950s. Musical bumps is similar to our game musical chairs.


I was completely transported by this book, and have ordered the author’s other book, Stranger in the House, about women’s experience when their menfolk returned from the war.  As usual, I feel that I have lived in that time, and if reincarnation were true, I would think I had been there.

Sunday, 28 August 2016

I would rather have had another reading day.  Home gardening was required and I eventually accomplished the removal of two wheelbarrows full of weeds and the cutting back of some spent perennials.

the wooden bowl project completed

the wooden bowl project completed


Cripp's Pink apples

Cripp’s Pink apples

I had been worried in the afternoon that I had not seen Skooter all day, called to him now and then for an hour while gardening, and was overjoyed when he finally appeared.


Skooter in the evening sunshine

Skooter in the evening sunshine

Kniphofia 'Earliest of All' (from Todd)

Kniphofia ‘Earliest of All’ (from Todd)

One of my glowing Xera agastaches

One of my glowing Xera agastaches: ‘Mandarin Dream’

Allan watered at the community building, where he found autumn blooming crocus in bloom.


at the Ilwaco Community Building

Sorry, Skooter, campfires are still forbidden.


late summer evening garden

late summer evening garden

"The lock upon my garden gate's a snail, that's what it is."

“The lock upon my garden gate’s a snail, that’s what it is.”

looking southeast

looking southeast


1997 (age 73):

August 26-28  Again I didn’t write down anything I did all week.

1998 (age 74):

August 26:  Today was my watering day but I didn’t water and didn’t work outside either.  I got started going through the pile of catalogs I had set aside to order stuff “sometime”.  I placed 2 or 3 orders and threw out some.  For 3 days I haven’t been outside to do any work.  The next few days are supposed to be HOT.

August 27:  Well, Bill and his helpers spread “mud” all over the existing vinyl.  He will install new vinyl tomorrow.  I asked it he did carpet installation too (he does) but I told him I’ll wait till spring.  I spent the day inside.  The house is a mess now but it will be nice when the vinyl is installed.

August 28 (Friday): HOT   About the time I expected Bill, Bill Jr showed up with bad news.  My vinyl is on a Carpet Exchange truck in Portland.  Bill said the earliest he can get it is Wednesday.  He was so upset.  I guess he thought I’d blow my top.  I didn’t.  I told him I’ll just camp out in this mess.  I took 6 begonia pots to the table and cut off many mildewed leaves.  Also potted more seedlings to set out in patio.

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Friday, 12 August 2016

On the first of three days off, I continued to try some small moves to get Skooter closer to being part of the family.  I had already put a couple of the resident cats’ bedding in with his bedding, and now I brought out his special pillowcase (belonged to Marilyn) that he has been sleeping on for awhile.

I gave Frosty cat treats so he'd find it interesting and not upsetting.

I gave Frosty cat treats so he’d have a good association with the scent of Skooter.

Frosty found it interesting and not upsetting.

Frosty found the pillowcase interesting and not upsetting.

I took it back to Skooter at the end of the day after all the other cats had had a sniff.

Frosty is back to his unperturbed self.

Frosty is back to his unperturbed self.

The day was much too hot.  Each time I stepped outside, I went right back in.  Comfortable?  I disagree:

not comfortable when over about 65!

not comfortable when over about 65!

Instead of gardening, I read about it.

good book

good book

Finally, at 5, the temperature cooled enough to put in three hours of concentrated gardening.

My mission continued to be getting good mulch out of the debris pile.  (If we had someone living next door, I wouldn’t have such a messy area here.  In fact, we might have a shed there to give privacy in a more friendly way than a fence.)

debris pile now next to the Nora/Alicia parking area.

debris pile next to the Nora/Alicia parking area.

under the debris: good stuff

under the debris: good stuff

Over three days, I got over 20 wheelbarrowloads like this out of that pile.

Over three days, including last weekend, I got over 20 wheelbarrowloads like this out of that pile.

Calvin looking debonair on the patio. He is increasingly more confident outside, less of a scaredy cat.

Calvin looking debonair on the patio. He is increasingly more confident outside, less of a scaredy cat.

His nervous licking has stopped, resulting in a beautifully glossy coat. I hope he does not get nervous again over Skooter.

His nervous licking has stopped, resulting in a beautifully glossy coat. I hope he does not get nervous again over Skooter.

front of bogsy woods nicely mulched from debris pile

front of bogsy woods nicely mulched from debris pile

soothing to know the plants have some good soil

soothing to know the plants have some good soil

Meanwhile, Allan had done me an enormous favour by digging out the stump of the big old barberry that had lost my affection by not being spectacular in fruit.  Because I still think I might be mistaken about it, he planted it at the back of Nora’s lot. (Alicia has said we can plant anything we want back there!)

Allan's photos, before

Allan’s photos, before



Allan's photos, before


Allan also rehomed these snails that I found in a crushed container in the debris pile.

They went elsewhere.

They went elsewhere.

later, with debris pile mulch added where the barberry was

later, with debris pile mulch added where the barberry was

I had an audience, to the far right, below, as I walked back and forth during the afternoon.

I so feel for him not getting to go outside.

I so feel for him not getting to go outside.

We watched a double feature of My Cat From Hell as I continue to seek tips from Jackson Galaxy.

the font of cat wisdom, Jackson Galaxy

the font of cat wisdom, Jackson Galaxy

Saturday, 13 August 2016

Skooter in my room in the midmorning...

Skooter relaxed in my room in the midmorning…

...and looking out the window, longing for the garden. I hope it will remind him of Marilyn's.

…and looking out the window, longing for the garden. I hope it will remind him of Marilyn’s.

He was no longer hissing at the door to the rest of the house.  Progress!  But until he has been here a week, he can’t have the run of the house.  When he does go outside (outfitted with a BirdsBeSafe collar), I want to have the best chance that he is bonded enough to come back.

In the early afternoon, Allan and I took the van to the Saturday Market so that he could bring home a new acquisition for the bogsy woods.

from Northwest Naturals: The green leaf is now mine.

from Northwest Naturals: The green leaf is now mine.

Allan drove home while I did my weekly walkabout of the market starting at Salt Hotel.

Salt Hotel courtyard

Salt Hotel courtyard

I delivered the weekly bouquet, which I do to show I appreciate the way Salt has enhanced our town.

I delivered the weekly bouquet, which I do to show I appreciate the way Salt has enhanced our town.

in the lobby

in the lobby

I visited owner Karla at Time Enough Books...

I visited owner Karla at Time Enough Books…

and chatted with Pink Poppy Bakery's Darby (and got some chocolate cinnamon bundt cake for later).

and chatted with Pink Poppy Bakery’s Darby (and got some chocolate cinnamon bundt cake for later).

Pink Poppy baker Maddy was reading during a slow moment.

Pink Poppy baker Maddy was reading during a slow moment.

spinning at Purly Shell Fiber Arts (with dogs and an angora rabbit)

spinning at Purly Shell Fiber Arts (with dogs and an angora rabbit)