Saturday, November 30, 2013


A great weekend for some - non Thanksgiving
exercise and activities.  Continue to get the garden
put to bed or at least those parts not still growing. 
Cabbage doing good, but chard got hit hard with
cold weather.  Outside warm season plants-they
have been frozen and are gone.

If you have maple trees, finish the last composting or
 mulching of the leaves.  (Remove the leaves from
 the house gutters.)   We have a LOT of leaves this

One last mowing of grass or weeds.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013


 A modified Arctic front will push south out of 
Canada into the PNW in the late Sunday night thru 
Monday night.  Arrival is not precise.  Breezy rainfall 
on Sunday will transition to lowering snowfall levels
 by Monday. Post-holiday travel home over the
 mountains will be difficult. If the system arrives
 earlier, even the coast range could see snowfall on 
Sunday. SNOW showers will be probable at all elevations 
by Monday night/Tuesday.
 Temps will plummet into the teens west side in wind 
sheltered areas.   Current weather hints of a slow warming
 by Fri/Sat, Dec 6,7. Another cold clipper may touch us
 by Sunday/Monday Dec 8,9 for rain at the surface, snow
 at low elevations. This event will be the coldest in quite 
some time, so be prepared (livestock water, plumbing, etc).


This is the time of year to give thanks for
what we have.

For where we live.

For MANY modern conveniences we have to
 make our lives a blessing, while living in a
world that often people have so little.

The first Thanksgiving was one of sharing and fellowship. 
This is a great example for us this Thanksgiving season.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Pre thanksgiving

More pretty good weather, lows of
42F and highs of 55F.

No rain for a while, more time to catch
 up this week on chore that we haven't
 got to yet.

Quick review:
Empty hoses.
Empty irrigation systems, leave the end open to
drain all winter but keep it closed enough to keep
 mice and slugs out of the pipes.

Drain any spraying equipment.  Store organic or
conventional pesticides in a place they won't get
wet or freeze.  Do not store in the well house.

Clean and oil garden tools.
Prep garden motor equipment by running the
engine out of gas, thru the spark plug add a little
oil and crank the engine to distribute the oil.

NOTE:  Do not use gas with ethanol, it ruins 2
cycle engines, look for the old leaded gas.


Friday, November 22, 2013

This week

On and off wet weather with
more wet weather next week.

Temps ranging from lows of 30-39 F;
with highs of 46-52 F.

Good weather to clean up the leaves; 
one final lawn mowing;  control unwanted
weeds;  remove the warm season plants
from the garden or do some spring prep
on fields and orchards.

Thursday, November 21, 2013


Take time to have a good Thanksgiving day.
Relax, enjoy your friends.

Enjoy the day with family, friends and/or relatives.

Try to incorporate some of the marvelous bounty
of the past years produce in the holiday meals.

It is a time to be thankful for living in a great
country that provides us with untold opportunity
and bounty.

After traveling to many foreign countries, be
 thankful for living in a free country, were we
have the opportunity to elect our officials. 

To live in a country where most people are
pretty well off;  not as in other countries that people make
$20-100 per month and where doubling their income
can be accomplished by teaching people how to prune,
 how to sort fruit, and how to direct market produce.

Yes, we have it pretty easy here.

This past trip we are very thankful now for a
 toilet that flushes.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Nice but cold

The next while will be very nice, sunny but on
 the cold side, ranging from 27 degrees to 40
degrees during the night;  t hen shy rocketing to
 a high of around 52 degrees.

Cover the faucets, drain the hoses, protect
watering features and animal dishes.

Any warm season plants will be "done" if not
protected with walls of water or mini greenhouses
or cloches.

A good week to finish cleaning up the warm season
plants from the garden;  maybe too late for
 transplanting but hey, why not.

Tree fruits should all be picked, stored and/or
preserved.  Nuts - should be dried.

Winter squash placed in a protected area where
the squash won't freeze, especially the next 4-5 days.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Fall crops

The fall cole crops planted in September are still doing
quite well.  Kind of slow growing but still growing.

So far the weather is near perfect for growing the
cole or cool crops that grow well in the cool weather.

Growing cabbage, lettuce, kale, fava beans,  garlic,
cauliflower, collards, kale, kohlrabi, mustards, turnips.

Friday, November 15, 2013


There are a LOT of leaves still falling from the
trees, especially maple, oak and birch trees.  The
maples are covered with the "whirly bird seeds"
which is often an indication of a colder winter.

Rake, mow, compost the leaves.  They are great
for the garden, for putting into the flower bed, for
placing around colder sensitive blueberry bushes
with shallow roots.

It looks like we will behaving a nice, LONGGGGGGGG
fall, winter period, as the fall started back in mid
September and  the cooler weather usually lasts until
 after March or mid April.  That could be as long as
6-7 months. 

What we really need is .......................a lot of rain. 
Yes rain and 15 foot of snow in the mountains.  The
last three years have been really down on moisture
so a good, wet-snowy year would do wonders for
 the ground water which looks to be down a lot this year.

Pre holidays

Ag is slowing down as the holidays approach.

Some farm produce stands still providing product.

Pruning starting.

Field renovations - starting.

Growers getting ready for ag meetings and 2014.

Enjoy the holidays as they provide a time
to slow down and enjoy family.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Rain + -

Rain, good and bad.

We need the rain to fill up the depleted groundwater,
actually around 60-100 inches would do the trick;
but it makes yard, garden and farm work tough.

Pruning has started..  In January thru May there
will be about 35 opportunities to take a good  class
on pruning to learn the principles to prune most
anything, but we spend the most time on tree fruits.

Anyone wanting to the Master Gardner class, register
ASAP as the intro class is the first week of December
and the regular class starts the second week of
January and goes for around 10 weeks.

Monday, November 11, 2013

To Does

Weeds are growing crazily.

Mulch the garden to keep the soil
from becoming compacted.  The mulch
will also keep the winter weeds under control.
If not, the weed hoe will make them short timers.

Use all of the leaves for mulching in the flower
beds, good for mulch &  protect from cold,
freezing weather and will protect bulbs.

Empty any remaining hoses of water
so they don't crack from water

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Indian summer

We have been enjoying a few more days
of the glorious Indian summer.

Most of the fruit has been picked.  Most of the
hazelnuts and walnuts have been picked and

Winter gardeners are actually doing quite well.

Most of the tree fruits are loosing their leaves
so pruning can start in the next three weeks.

Raspberries should have been done by now. 
Other berries need pruning between
December and March.

Roses need pruning down to 14 inches, then
 in mid February prune the hybrid teas back
to 6 inches.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

This week

Weather turning cool and wet.
Most fields reseeded for spring
crops or cover crops.

Hazelnuts - mostly done.  Good yields.

Apple and pears - mostly done.
Medium to good yields.

Indications are that we will be having
a longer, cooler or colder winter. 
Since the weather changed in October,
we could have up to 6 months of winter.

With the late infestation of spotted
wing drosophila, be aware that if we
have a normal spring, we could have a
very high SWD infestation.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013


With the cold weather coming upon us, take the
 time to do a little prep for the winter time.  Some
call it the 72 hour pack.  A pack that contains food,
 water and shelter that will help you remain dry and
 fed for at least 72 hours.

Next, have a storage of water, food, shelter, heat
 that can sustain you for a week, a month or even
 a year.  The way things are going, having a back
 up food and water supply may be a necessity.  

Monday, November 4, 2013


Great time to use some of your produce,
dried, fresh or canned.

Fresh broccoli,  onions, garlic, potatoes,
carrots, etc.

Then apples, winter pears, hazelnuts.

Chestnuts are falling.  Go to the internet to ID
which chestnut your might have.  We typically
have two, horse chestnut or American chestnut.
The horse chestnut is not good good to eat.
The American chestnut is the one that is used to
 roast for the holidays.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Looks like ran for the next few days.

Get the leaves picked up on the lawns
or other living materials to prevent

Place the leaves on flower beds, around
roses, blueberries or compost in piles.  Be
sure to add nitrogen to start the break down
 process and cover to keep from getting too
wet this winter.

Place winter squash in a protected area.

Garlic still slow at emerging.

Friday, November 1, 2013

This week

Most of the hazelnut harvest is over. 
A few waiting for the last nuts to fall. 
The next few rainy days  will delay any
harvesting for a while.

Some late apples and pears.

Pumpkins and farm Halloween events were
able to make a come back with the good
weather.  The last few days have been
hectic for the local farm stands - which
is good.

The next few days of rain will dampen most
of the ag activities in the area.