Lilacs and cherry blossoms

Lilacs and cherry blossoms
WELCOME TO MY BLOG! I am glad you found me because I hope I can be helpful or at least interesting for you to follow, be you a gardener yourself or just watching vicariously.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Diary 4/21/14

Busy weekend full of family and friends. Hikes on the "old road", morel mushroom hunting, a sunny egg hunt, and a hike in the mountains. Egg hunt went well with fun prizes, nice sharing, and not a whimper. I wonder how many eggs are still out there?
Now, we are a month closer to summer and the longer days are nice. I want to start eating dinner earlier and have that after dinner time to go back out to the garden to work. It is a peaceful time; no one is mowing, blowing, weed eating, or making machine noises of any kind. The road below is quiet with no traffic going by. The birds are busy, and sometimes I am joined by deer.
We are about to have a real rain event with up to 3 inches. This is extremely good news. I was at the top of our drainage yesterday and not only was there no snow, it was dry. Lovely hike at the edge of my ability to the saddle aptly named Goodview Ridge.
All in all, I am a lucky woman!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Diary 4/17/14

They are filming a video of a Formula One Ferrari on our road. Somehow they received permission from the county to close the road. I have not seen or heard it, but I guess if you stand outside when they are filming, you can hear it work through the gears at one hundred miles per hour on our picturesque road with plenty of winding turns. It is one of only three made of this specific car and  worth more millions than one can imagine for a bright red sports car. If I get  picture today, I will post it tomorrow. Meanwhile, trips down the road have to land in one of
the open opportunities, otherwise, you wait for an hour. The yard is green and now the Lilacs are blooming, so for me, Spring is officially here. Brought in another armload of asparagus yesterday. Most of my neighbors and friends are happy for our overabundance.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Diary 4/15/14

Tax day for many, I have never experienced the anxiety, just got it done. This coming from the person who usually get their driver's license on her birthday...Looking forward to a pleasant weekend with family and friends and wishing the same for all. We hope to go look for morels, especially if we get the little bit of rain we are supposed to be receiving tomorrow night. I did get up to look at the eclipsed moon last night. It was brown and muddy looking.
 I didn't stay up to watch it reappear which would have actually been prettier.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Diary 4/12/14

Another beautiful day. So happy to see bees working the cherry trees. The branches are not loaded with bees, but there are several in each area which is better than some folks telling me they have no bees
working their trees. Scary!

Diary 4/13/14

Following my grandson's example,
we made this cute birdies in the nest, farm version using straw instead of confetti. Fun, easy, and kept Garden Girl busy for half an hour, which counts for another increment in the day...

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Diary 4/10/14

It is not everyday that you wake up to a turkey on the roof of your car! After the hen

hopped down, she headed for the chickens making sweet chortling noises at them. I let them out to see what would happen, and the rooster immediately went after her and drove her away.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Processing Morel Mushrooms

It is that time of year, the short window when all the elements line up to provide one of Nature's most mysterious gifts, the morel mushroom. The soil temperature has to reach up toward the 50 degree mark. The atmosphere and the forest floor must be at least damp, but not soaked or too wet. Lastly, the competition on the forest floor must be scant. That is why these mushrooms are most easily found where there has been a recent forest fire. The fire not only eliminates crowding so the gnome capped fungus can push its way up, but also it sterilizes the ground so that no other microbes can beat them to the punch. It is pretty complicated. Add to that the mysterious placement of these mushrooms; sometimes they are in old growth forests, sometimes, they are at the base of Madrone trees, and sometimes they appear out of pine needles. It is quite an accomplishment to ever find them at all. I have enough that we had stroganoff,
 and now I am cleaning the rest for freezing. When you bring your mushrooms home, split them lengthwise and soak them in barely salty water to remove any mites that hide in the brain-like crevices. Rinse two or three times or until the water shows no debris. Then pat them dry. I freeze small packages for spaghetti, etc. I also freeze some on trays so they stay separate for other meals. I like to have some dried also because they last forever that way. Even the Iceman had mushrooms, medicinal, I think, in his backpack. Morels dry very quickly in a dehydrator. I love them chicken-fried using the flour, egg, seasoned flour method. I cook them to a light brown and then freeze them for a classy snack later. Just thaw and broil. If you have the opportunity to hunt these spring mushrooms and have success, Bravo!