Post a Pic Tuesday: Random stuff

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Collecting the metal in the barn. Funny what turns up.

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Yeah, we need some grazing animals stat. That grass is too darn high.

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The rhododendron, Washington’s state flower. So beautiful and so toxic…to sheep. So it’s all coming down this summer.

 

Just some random stuff from around the old place.  We have a busy summer ahead, from the looks.

Post a Pic Tuesdays– Juniper Burn, or the Desolation of Stupid

As is occasionally the case with country living, accidents will happen.  In this case, a stray spark led to a small brush fire, scorching juniper that had run wild over the landscaping (which was a nice side effect) but also nailing our plum and cherry trees (which was a not so nice side effect).  We got to meet the fine folks of Snohomish Fire District 4 who arrived very very quickly and immediately got the fire under control.  It looks bad from the road, but it’s a fairly small burn.

Here’s some pictures of it all

Burnt Holly

The fire hit this English holly, another invasive that will now be easier to dispense with.

Window View

Taken from the window, not long after the firemen (and one lady) put the blaze out.

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Scorched juniper

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The flames went right up-hill due to it being a breezy day.

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The burn revealed old terrace landscaping that had become hidden under mounds of juniper bushes, now burnt bare.

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That untreated cedar fence was going to be firewood. Heh.

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Poor plum tree, no plums this year. 😦

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Closer view of the old terracing and the poor plum tree of love.

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It spread through the grass up hill, but was beaten back, so our pasture is fine.

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The juniper hid a lot of hard work landscaping this place.

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Poor cherry tree! The stump is fine, though!

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This is well up-hill, it spread in less than ten minutes. This is why rural areas need multiple fire districts.

Desolation of stupid is my husband’s name for the burned area.  The Juniper Burn is mine.  It looked worse than it is.  The grass is likely to come back, it doesn’t look like anything was burned to death, but with no leaves, the juniper will be much easier to clear out and replace with fruit trees or bushes.  While the fire was going on, it was stressful, but it was over quickly.  I took the girls and kept them out of trouble.  My oldest was thrilled and wanted to help the firemen.  My youngest smelled the smoke and was scared and unhappy.  Funny how personality differences come through even at very young ages.

Anyway, due to this accident, we’re going over our property and will be working to clear fire hazard plants out now while there is still frequent rain.  And if things go very well, we’re going to go ahead and throw some sheep out to graze down some of the brush in the next week or two.  Sheep are great at eating plain grass and also knocking out underbrush.  Their dining habits blend cow and goat, skewing more towards one or the other depending on breed.

Life is a strange business, but we’re glad to have good neighbors and firefighters.

Post a Pic Tuesday– Rhubarb Surprise

Alas, I have no recipes handy, just the plant itself.

That there is some rhubarb.

That there is some rhubarb.

The previous owners tried to take it down, but a big old rhizome remained above ground and despite twelve whole months alone in the cold and wet, there was enough life in the old rhubarb to come roaring back, as you can see.  Pretty cool!  Much cooler than when bamboo does that! (I hate bamboo in the yard, it is super uncool and bamboo shoots are just not delicious enough to make up for the rapid growth and headache, as those rhizomes can kick it for up to 18 months).

I have been tweeting around a bit, but otherwise the household’s been far too sick for me to find blogging time, or gardening time.  So the pace will slow on all that.  This is already a year of challenges.  But we get to meet them with RHUBARB!

I cannot take the credit though, it was my lovely husband who noticed the rhubarb had started coming in while taking our oldest sweet child around and about the place.  He was thrilled, I was thrilled and now here we are.

This has been post a pic Tuesday.