Posts Tagged ‘Port of Ilwaco’

Wednesday, 16 February 2022

Port of Ilwaco

Ilwaco boatyard

We returned to the boatyard to finish up, including a bit more ceanothus pruning, considerable digging up of Pennisetum macrourum (beautiful but too much of a runner) and the shearing of the huge patch of P. macrourum at the south end (too too much for us old folks to dig up.)


Read Full Post »

First notice: Folks who subscribe via email, I apologize for the inconvenience but we are going to start using the “read more” button because of…reasons. This means you can’t read the entire post in email anymore, and will have to click through to the site. I hope it won’t cause you any trouble or stop you from reading. It should still be readable on your smartphone through your web browser.Also, please, let me know if it works; is the content under the read more button hidden until you click?

Sunday, 13 February 2022

This morning, a blue wall appeared over the crab pots next door. Last summer, we had a back drop of uncovered crab pots with colorful floats inside. I like the blue tarp wall also. It speaks to me of living in a working class town instead of the kind of place where you see fancy blue painted stucco walls.


Read Full Post »

Friday 25 December 2021

At home

The cattens had a typically peaceful day.

Nickel and Faerie have the closest bond.

Skooter modeled a gift from Marlene…for a very short time.

behind him, a bookshelf waiting to be organized

Allan continued to work on the 2021 version of his boating book with a rapt audience.

At the suggestion of Mr Tootlepedal, he has added a scale to his maps.

Stormy weather made it a good reading day for me. I finished the fourth memoir by Dodie Smith (I hope to share something about these later) and felt verklempt that they were over, but I have ordered a biography of her. The memoirs left off with over thirty years of her life left to describe! I think she wrote the last one when in her late 80s. I wonder if she hoped to live long enough to write one more.

After opening gifts from each other …..

A perfect pair of garden ornaments from Allan

….and from Montana Mary (delicious condiments and some books!) and Our Kathleen (Penzey’s spices and my very own copy of A Way to Garden!), we had a simple dinner of delicious salmon, caught last summer by our nearby neighbor Jeff Norwood…we’d frozen and saved it for a special occasion…and rice with soy sauce and canned peas, with Christmas cookies from Denny and Mary for dessert.

Saturday, 26 December 2020

Port of Ilwaco

Yes, I actually left the property. (Allan leaves it almost daily to walk to the post office between midnight and 1 AM to get our mail). I had got a message from Heather at Purly Shell Fiber Arts that a bag of discarded wool mixed with wind blown fallen leaves awaited me on the shop patio. Compost makings!

I got to see my friend Jack!

We bagged up some more leaves for a total of three bags full of compostables.

I very much enjoyed the writing on the patio where the Purly women spin wool in good weather.

It’s been in my head ever since.

Just across the lawn…

Folks were dining outdoors at Salt Pub.

In one of the port curbside gardens, a geum bloomed out of season.

We drove to the boatyard to check the garden there for trash that tends to blow in. I do like seeing the encouraging signage that was placed there by our county public health department…and we saw a couple of new boats.

Back at home, I had time to load bagged leaves from autumn into the new leaf bins and some woolly leaf debris into bin one. The new path is so easy to walk on.

While I did have another project in mind, blustery weather arrived and sent me back to a book, and I didn’t mind.

Read Full Post »

Saturday, 29 February 2020

Guest photo: Rosemary Saunders Hickman shared with us this photo of the daffodil display in Ocean Park, in front of our former gardening job, the Wiegardt Gallery.


Port of Ilwaco 

I began the day by picking a bouquet for an event at Don Nisbett’s Art Gallery. I have to confess it did not get there till almost noon. Allan and I were both exhausted and slept late. Allan delivered the bouquet.

The gardens at the port have grouped displays of small and delicate narcissi.


FEB7E997-FD81-4D0B-AC9E-928946BF39D4The bouquet was pleasing to Don and Jenna. I wish I had remembered to include some red twig dogwood stems



At the marina just across the lawn from the gallery, boats floated in a silvery late winter light.

After bouquet delivery, Allan went to the library where a Carol Klein cottage gardening book awaited me. A sock drive will provide some warm coziness to the feet of local homeless folk.


At home 

While picking the bouquet, I had been drenched with a sudden rainstorm and thought oh good! A reading day! Yet when the rain stopped and a weak sun emerged, I had to start moving a big pile of compost by the Nora House driveway.
Allan had the idea that sword fern leaves could be chopped with the lawnmower.  He pulled them from the pile and from a tarp in which they’d been burrito-ed and kicked them around on the lawn next door…

8DBDB31C-6BD9-4C04-AF9D-810CD104838E…and successfully mowed them.

So exciting was this that I pulled a quantity of ferns off the top of one of the compost bins and he mowed those, too, in an area that I had recently thought about graveling someday to extend the patio, till I remembered that it made a perfect leaf mowing area.


He trimmed the side bits off the bamboo that we had gleaned at our Depot Restaurant garden and was able to mow them…

2BC158C6-5D97-45EF-8057-178039D05F1B…rather to my surprise.
DBEF1406-7A86-4515-8AA0-9B8E812C5551Lots of chopped greens got mixed into the compost bins to provide a dose of nitrogen.
He helped me place a concrete vault, one that I had been lucky enough to get from the Long Beach City works yard, at a corner of the front gravel garden…

…all ready for cool small plants. I added some pipes and chimney pot thingies to the very front of the garden…

1D394243-0582-40DE-AD48-E33587CBC748…and was amused to realize this was very Derek Jarman.

(I started his memoir, Modern Nature, last night.)

Allan helped me with a couple of biggish rocks that came from the works yard.


Someday when we no longer have the Long Beach job, I will miss all the salvage and compost materials that I get from there.
One more little brainstorm that Allan helped with was to make small wood toppers for the shorter lengths of rebar that I have stuck in along one gravel path, to avoid eye poking.  This also reminded me of Derek Jarman.
B4983FAB-8192-41EB-B9AF-C7FED1BA22ADWith the fun decorating done, I applied myself to moving the biggest pile of compost. I had a lazy and rather bored audience, one of whom fell asleep during the show.

I used The Toy to chop the tall grasses into three lengths for quicker composting.

Although I frequently thought that I was too tired, too cold and would stop, I persisted and got the pile pretty much done.

The compost bins are piled so high that they are almost toppling. I will be interested to see how soon the level will fall.

Tomorrow I hope to get even more accomplished in my garden.

Read Full Post »

Tuesday, 19 November 2019

I’d had two night of insomnia and simply could not get up early (well, early for us) and go down to volunteer with Allan at the crab pot tree.

On the way, he saw the Ilwaco city crew putting up lights.

Fortunately, I woke up and was breakfasting when he came home to get some tools and so I was able to join him and take some photos.  (That and making an album for Discover Ilwaco was the extent of my volunteering, though.  I did not even tie one zip tie for the lights.)

Port of Ilwaco

Lola (left) and a friend decorating the crab pot snowman

We have known Lynette (Lola) for years, since way back when she was the manager of the Anchorage Cottages.  Now she writes for a living and will read her Coastal Christmas poem at the Crab Pot event.

Don Nisbett (left) stringing lights

Allan to the far left

Allan’s photo

A feast of donuts and maple bars (and coffee!) was on hand for the volunteers. Charity had a mishap with her maple bar.

Allan’s photos

Fortunately, there were still some replacement pastries.

view from the crab pot tree (Allan’s photo)

Something new this year is a “black cod pot” tree to the south of the port office.

Mark from the port crew (boatyard manager) testing the electrics by the port office

Our Jenna to the left of the black cod pot tree

I think some more height is going to be added with more pots.

I had to check the nearby port office garden and the cosmos that refuse to die.

The port office staff don’t want me to pull them, not even if they are still blooming at crab pot tree time, which is…..I walked with Jenna back down to the big tree, where light stringing was still going on.

Jenna and a gal from the Ilwaco Freedom Market repaired to bay 3 of the boatyard to spray paint some floats for decoration.  I followed and found a couple of weeds to pull on the way.

Allan’s telephoto

in Bay 3

a smart way to keep spray paint in its place

local Girls Scouts had decorated the floats

Jenna asked me if I wanted to paint a float (“for Tangly Cottage”).  Feeling exhausted from insomnia, I demurred.

Earlier, walking by the westernmost garden bed on the way to the port office, I had been appalled at its sheets of creeping sorrel in a bed whose soil level was unattractively low.  I thought then, “If only I had some more mulch.”

While Allan kept volunteering, I dragged myself and a bucket and tools to that bed with the intention of weeding…but just as I began, I saw a text from Julez of Salt Hotel offering us part of a pile of “bark mulch”.  I envisioned hideous red bark…and then saw the pile on the parking lot of Skywater Gallery, next to Salt.

lovely black gold!

I accepted the offer with alacrity and, after calling Allan to come help, started weeding in hasty preparation.

a mess of weeds

sorrel and pink flowering strawberries (the latter is ok here)

As Allan got ready, two other trucks showed up.  Would there be a battle for the mulch?  No…We’d been offered half of it, and Kirk took about a third, and Todd, one of the Salt staffers, helped wheelbarrow loads over to our garden beds.

Allan’s photo

Todd and Allan



Although we got many buckets of weeds, some weedy sins are buried under that mulch.  I hope they stay buried till early 2020.

With the soil level raised, the bed looks so much better.

We went home for more buckets.  Upon our return to do more fall clean up at the port, the dark sky to the east turned into a light rain.

While I did not mind going back home as it was past three, the weather did fool us and got nice again shortly.  We were not about to go back out.

Allan picked up many windfall apples, just to go in the compost.

If only it were not such a long journey to Lezlie’s house, her crows could have them.  In our garden, I want to avoid attracting raccoons.  I’ll save them for awhile in case she gets out the old mule and buckboard and comes to town.

On the porch, I had seen a pretty be-ribboned gift bag. In today’s rushing about, I had not had time to open it.  When I did, I found a Hello Kitty wind chime made from a tin and cutlery.

It wasn’t from Jenna…it wasn’t from MaryBeth…so who?  Who knows I like Hello Kitty?  I know that Montana Mary isn’t in town, so who?  I love it, so thank you to whoever it was, and please confess.

When I sat down to write blog posts, I churned ’em out, six in a row, which leaves my next week of evenings open for reading.




Read Full Post »

Monday, 12 November 2019

Skooter wakes up.

After our days of skiving off work for Halloween (but not resting), we buckled down to the fall clean up tasks.

Here is a mystery cat, a photo taken by Allan…somewhere along the way to work.  Unfortunately for me, I missed seeing it.

The Depot Restaurant

It was high time to clip the hops off of the dining deck lattice.  In fact, sous chef Jamie told us that they had just taken in the outdoor seating and had wondered when the hops would be removed.  I do like to stay one step ahead so that no one has to ask us to do things, thus we were just in time.

I trimmed from the outside, while Allan trimmed from the inside.


north side of dining deck


I like to leave some perennials standing.

Allan’s photos:

We cleaned up along the east wall of the restaurant and put some river rock in a low spot where the edging logs got shifted..

Now we wait for a hard frost to take down the window box annuals, and we try to remember to put some water on the window boxes once a week.

north side

still blooming, planted by Roxanne from Basket Case Greenhouse

Long Beach

I started a clean up of the NW quadrant garden, putting in about an hour of work.


Because birds are still enjoying the seeds, I left some tall perennials in place even though I think some passersby will find it messy.

seeds on Solidago ‘Fireworks” and sanguisorba



an hour later



The pale pink hesperantha, either Mrs. Hegarty or Viscountess Byng, is such a runner that we pulled much of it last spring.  A large amount that evaded us has been blooming beautifully in the autumn.  I find that if we pull a massive amount, then about the perfect quantity of blooms remain.

Meanwhile, Allan string trimmed an impossible-to-weed bed (dank, wet, rooty) in the SE quadrant across the street.


There is talk of removing this bed, trees and all.  The trees themselves are not healthy because of the wet soil.

With all that work done, I took this photo, below, and then ate my lunch whilst Allan ran the blower on the pavement.

We drove to Ilwaco and checked on the south garden by the Port of Ilwaco office—still with the cosmos that will not die.

just before sunset

It was not till we got home that Allan realized, while unloading debris, that the string trimmer and rake had been left behind on the bench in Fifth Street Park.  He hared back there.  Before he had arrived, I got a message from Cathy of Captain Bob’s chowder that a Long Beach local had noticed the tools and had alerted Cathy, who was holding them for us in the restaurant.  Whew.  We know other public gardeners who lost some power equipment by leaving it behind and having it gone by the time they returned and looked for it. The next time we saw our rescuer, Allan gave him a tip for saving us some stress and money.

Being home by five meant I had a nice relaxed evening for writing up the Halloween blogs at last.


Read Full Post »

Tuesday, 10 September 2019

The mini-birdbath that Debbie W. gave me on garden tour day looks cute filled with rain.

Boreas Inn

We got fifteen bags of Gardner and Bloome Harvest Supreme to mulch the west beds at the Boreas…first ten, and then Allan went to get five more.  We made them go further by mixing in the last of the spring mulch pile, a bulk delivery than had been extra sandy and grey looking.  The beds had looked discouragingly grey all summer.  We should have just added the bagged mulch last spring but…we hadn’t.  I am too budget minded and have an ongoing problem with spending other people’s money, even when I should.

Allan took all the photos of the project.

The bulk mulch had been kept on and under tarps.
I kept telling Allan “Don’t make it too grey!”

I was able to erase “mulch Boreas” from the work board, although I noticed later in the week that I had written “pull phormiums” rather than crocosmia.  Thank goodness our target will be the much easier crocosmia.  I have eliminated almost all phormiums from gardens that we care for.

In the evening, we treated Our Kathleen to an early birthday dinner at

The Depot Restaurant.

summer salad
Duck Shanghai for Kathleen, with orange blackberry sauce and ginger and five spice sticky rice
Prawns Bangkok for Allan
I could eat a soup bowl full of the Steak Killian’s scallion sauce.
a birthday brownie
and blackberry trifle

We had a leisurely two hour feast.  For once, we were not the last table to leave because all the mulching work suddenly caught up with me and so we were the second to last.

Wednesday, 11 September 2019

Allan put on a trailer side because we had mulching plans today.

Before work, we checked on a house out of our usual routine, to make sure that there were no big pruning issues (like leaning trees).  It had a lovely secret garden feel.

The Depot Restaurant

Chef Michael had asked us to prune along the edge of the side yard of the house that serves as the restaurant office.

after (Allan’s photos)

While Allan loaded the last of the debris, I checked on the Depot garden.

We had intended to take the debris home for chipping, but there was so much, and some was thorny salmonberry, so we took it to the dump.

There I saw a stumpery.

On the way out, we scored a great little dustbin for a planter, for only $5.00

Diane’s Garden

We did such a quick check of the Red Barn garden that I did not count it as work, and spent an hour at Diane’s tidying her garden.  Some of the sweet peas are still floriferous enough to leave for one more week.  All Allan’s photos here.

The roadside garden:

The septic vault garden:


It was 70 degrees, rather hot for us, and time for wee break.

The Basket Case Greenhouse

I had to see what was new and found a Panicum ‘Blood Brothers’ that was irresistible.  We encountered Todd there and had an amusing chat, all fun and leisurely and off the clock of any job.

Peninsula Landscape Supply

We got a yard of the new kind of mulch…

Allan’s photo

…and took it to

The Port of Ilwaco

…to fluff up some of the beds that had been walked and sat upon during Slow Drag.


I have made a place for some new plants, when the steady autumn rains come.

Allan’s photo
Allan’s photo, nicely fluffed formerly trampled area

I checked on the south port office garden while Allan put the last of the mulch on nearby curbside beds.

Cosmos ‘Cupcake’

The temperature had mercifully dropped to make for a beautiful evening.

All out of mulch, we checked on the curbside bed at At the Helm Hotel, where Allan noticed the dogwood berries.

My favourite bed by the Ilwaco pavilion:

On the way home, we saw that of the two Sunflowers of Mystery in the Ilwaco planters, one had been cut (not broken) off.  I was again mildly disappointed in human behavior…and reflected that the planters will soon be Not Our Problem.

A day later, two friends informed me that they had each (separately) seen a woman picking herself a big bouquet of flowers at the boatyard. One of them pointed out to her the several do not pick signs. The woman’s response: “I ain’t hurtin’ nothin’.”

I have toyed with the idea of making a public cutting garden somewhere else in town for people who need a bouquet so badly and who have no money for flowers and nowhere to grow them. I just think it would end in tears, probably mine.

The workboard got a little shorter.



Read Full Post »

Wednesday, 31 July 2019

Before work, I made a video walk through of the garden.  The one I tried to make yesterday had a spot on a lens, and I sounded terribly bored.  I still don’t sound very perky…but this is my best effort to capture Lily Time.

We then went on to a pleasantly all Ilwaco work day.

Mike’s garden

We mostly watered at Mike’s, along with a bit of escallonia pruning.

blue glob thistle and hydrangea in the back garden (Allan’s photo)

Between jobs, we photographed a garden that I had noticed the other day.

Spruce Street garden

It is wonderful.

looks like Salvia ‘Amistad’

Port of Ilwaco

Rain is forecast for tomorrow night so we watered just about half of the Howerton Avenue gardens.  We could not count on the rain for all the beds because Friday night is Art Walk and the gardens need to be tidied and refreshed.

I started trimming up the dead flowers of the santolinas and some of the lavenders.

east end
trimmed santolina

Euphorbia ‘Fen’s Ruby’, which hitched a ride in on some other plant, has run rampant in this garden.

It is feathery and cute, and nurseries still sell it; I find it to be a little horror and hope to get it mostly dug out…someday.

the fasciated toadflax
still fascinating
The Coho Charters lava rockscape

We had a coffee and treat break at the Ilwaco Bakery. That is turning into a pleasant weekly tradition.

the garden next door to the bakery (Allan’s photo)

I was thrilled to see that the “Fish Finder” finally has the names of the newer port businesses!

Allan’s photo
Allan’s photo

For years, it has had several businesses that were closed, and I felt that made the port look less than successful.  Another pole further down the port surely must have the names of other businesses such as the Don Nisbett Gallery.

Onward! We worked our way west.

Ilwaco pavilion garden

I was inspired to do some pruning for traffic sight lines in one of the gardens.

by the port office
Port Office, south wall
by Time Enough Books

We spent the last couple of hours weeding the boatyard garden.

Allan’s photo
Catananche (Allan’s photo)

 It was a pleasure to have an easy day.


Read Full Post »

Wednesday, 3 July 2019…

was an all Ilwaco day, my favourite kind of work day.

Allan took almost all of the photos.

Mike’s garden

I watered while Allan cut more branches out of the dying conifers which are supposed to be dug out (by someone else)…soon.

We stopped at home to offload debris and had a visit with Marlene and her dogs as they walked by.

Port of Ilwaco

I pruned my way most of the way down the Howerton Avenue gardens, shearing back wax myrtles and trimming ceanothus for clear traffic sight lines, while Allan did most of the watering.

Fellow gardener Joseph and his daughter Bella passed by.

 The santolinas were the most admired and asked-about plant today. I got all the inquirers to smell the lemony foliage.

You can see the difference in how nice and round the regularly pruned santolinas are, vs. these that were not pruned for a couple of years:

 And we saw MaryBeth as she took a stroll past the gardens.

Port Office garden finally filling in
from above
view from port office deck
ceanothus pruning at Time Enough Books

Last week I wrote about how a young boy had apologized for “hurting the blue plant” in the west end garden bed (an eryngium).  Today the same plant was hurt, by someone else, we assume.

I finally got out my camera while we worked at the west end.

Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’
west end of marina

looking east
looking south

We got all the Howerton Avenue gardens done except for the two east end beds.  They will have to wait for next week.

Read Full Post »

Tuesday, 25 June 2019

We started our day with a Shingrix jab at the local pharmacy.  The pharmacist said that sometimes the side effects are less with part two of the shot, and sometimes more.  It’s worth it if it prevents shingles, as I know from experience. He also said side effects other than arm pain would not start till tomorrow, and so we went to work.

Port of Ilwaco

I almost forgot to bring some more plants for the port office garden.  We went home and got some old standby Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’.

Allan’s photo

We got to see the Purly Shell dogs, Aria and my very good friend Jack…

….and got an update that my old stairmaster is happy in its new home.

I was ever so pleased to be able to weed and water the western and easternmost curbside gardens and CoHo Charters garden.

Phormium in bloom at the Skywater Gallery’s parking lot garden
before trimming the oxeye daisies

I got to pet this “pocket bulldog” pup.

I had the strongest urge to get myself one.  “Why?” said Allan.  That’s why:

Allan’s photo

I need more santolinas all the way through the bed above.

Allan’s photo

Last time we worked in these beds, a boy said to Allan that he was sorry he hurt the eryngium last year!  (Not calling it by name, of course.)

Brodiaea ‘Rudy’ (Allan’s photo)

I am thrilled that I have finally produced a garden at the Freedom Market, even if it is all “weeds” (appropriately).

It is a cannabis store, AKA “weed”…well, you get it.

looking east down Howerton
west end of the marina

We moved to the east end of Howerton for more watering and tidying.

crack in the sidewalk
California poppies
the fasciated toadflax
trimming the sea thrift
the ever annoying Euphorbia ‘Fen’s Ruby’; don’t plant it! (We didn’t it, it hitched in on something else.) Allan’s photo

The new bakery has tidied its parking lot garden.  It is but a food truck now, with rave reviews for the cinnamon rolls, but will eventually be a sit down bakery with breads and pain au chocolat, the sort of pastries we cannot get around here.

looking east
looking west
santolina, lavenders, eryngium

It felt fantastic to have (almost) the whole stretch of Howerton watered yesterday and today.

We had arranged to meet Alicia after work at the almost brand new Waterline pub at At the Helm Hotel.

nearby, my favourite bed
Allan’s photo
sword ferns that we had trimmed at the entrance

At the Helm Hotel

Allan’s photo
Allan’s photo

our view from the pub

Before our meal, Allan trimmed one more sword fern that was bringing down the tone outside our pub window.

We feasted. I wanted to try out several things to get photos for the Discover Ilwaco Facebook page.

Allan’s photo
Cobb salad
a tasty stew

We had a good long meal and a good long gabfest and ended the day by pulling the spent oxeye daisies out of the curb in front of the J’s cottage.

Allan’s photo

Yesterday, Skooter had been helping Alicia garden next door.  We had not seen him last night, but sometimes he comes in after we go to sleep.  We had not seen him today, either.  Guess where we found him at midnight?  Locked in Alicia’s garage.  He had snuck in when she put the wheelbarrow away.  He had much to say about it.  It is now the first place we will look if he is gone for more than half a day.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »