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CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  Kelejan on 8/13/2015, 1:52 pm

@trolleydriver wrote:All those different fruit sound delicious. There is no way we can grow peaches here in Ottawa. We used to live in St. Catharines (about 10 miles from Niagara Falls).  In that area there are all kinds of fruit being grown.  We had an apricot tree in our backyard. Some of the neighbours had peach, pear and cherry trees. And of course there vineyards galore in the Niagara Peninsula.

The peaches I obtained from our local supermarket came from The Okanagan,  the only desert region in Canada.  They get the hottest summer temperatures in Canada and we here in The Kootenay get the second hottest. The Kootenay, generally divided into the West Kootenay and the East Kootenay is located in the far eastern/southern part of British Columbia atop the U.S.A. I live in the West about an  hour's drive from the Border above Washington State.

The peaches cost $1 per pound and a box contained 20 pounds.  I must admit I am glad I only had one box and not two. I have made 17 jars  x 16oz. (500 ml.  or approx one pint.) I am now sitting down and waiting for the last jars to finish canning.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  Kelejan on 8/15/2015, 10:39 am

This morning the smoke coming up from Washington State was pretty noticeable this morning. Up until now all we had a slight haze so we have been lucky up to now.

Last night I was out with Jazz for his evening walk and all around the dogs were barking their heads off and I learned that the bear that visited me was around and wandering further afield in the sub-division.  Maybe that was my fault as I had, earlier on, collected every apple that had fallen from my tree, once in the morning and later on in the afternoon; so he had no apples from me and I surmise that he must have wandered further down instead of going straight away back up the hill. I had also stripped my one tree of anything that I could reach with my step ladder and my long ladder.

It looks like Jazz and I had better do our evening walk while it is still light. In late spring, summer and early fall, we do medium long walks morning and evening, and the rest of the time we do one long walk in the middle of the day.

Yesterday I also cleared all the radishes and took three bunches to the Seniors' Centre. They disappeared in minutes.

Tomorrow I will be picking pears for canning. I now realize why it is called "Retirement"  One gets tired. So much to do. How did I find time to go out to work?

I must start thinking of planting the garlic and the tulip and daffodil bulbs again.

How are all your plans coming along, fellow Canadians?

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  trolleydriver on 8/15/2015, 10:56 am

Not too many plans for me at this time but status is as follows:

BTW current humidity is at 97% ... feel like I am living in a shower stall.  Temps are again going into the 30s C for the next few days.

1. The SFG continues to produce but the pole beans have slowed down dramatically.  The melons are producing a lot of small fruit (one big one) and the cucumbers still are doing well. We have some nice romaine lettuce to pick. Swiss chard continues to give us plenty of leaves to pick. Newly seeded peas, radishes, carrots and beats are growing but the plants still very small. The plastic forks are doing their job of protecting one of the newly seeded squares.

2. My back injury (done while turning compost a couple of weeks ago) has healed. I believe my osteopath helped a lot with this healing.

3. I have not had any BPPV (vertigo) symptoms for several days for which I am very thankful.

4. Starting at noon today we will be looking after two of our grandchildren (ages 5.5 and 7.75) until Sunday evening ... fun but quite exhausting.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  CapeCoddess on 8/15/2015, 11:09 am

@Kelejan wrote:
Tomorrow I will be picking pears for canning. I now realize why it is called "Retirement"  One gets tired. So much to do. How did I find time to go out to work?


I just got the best laugh from that, Kelejan!!! Thank you. I often say that work is interfering with my life. Can't wait to 'get tired' physically instead of the mental 'mush for brains' that I come home with each night.

My garden & fruit trees seem to be about a week or so behind yours. Our silly winter put us back about 2 weeks. Did you also have a horrible winter?

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  Kelejan on 8/15/2015, 11:15 am

Thanks for your update, TD
When humidity reaches 100% does that mean rain?

1)  Your garden seems to be producing well.

2)  Please take care when doing physical work. Take breaks and know when to stop.
I have learned to do that now and I can work for quite a while if I take small bites at any job and frequent breaks and stop when I feel I can still do more.

3) Glad about the vertigo and I hope it does not return.

4) Enjoy your grandchildren and be thankful you do not have to look after them all the time like my sister had to. But I must admit she was a lot younger then and now they are grown up and she can relax a bit.

For myself, I am now off the the local farmers' market.  I hope there are more vendors this week as many signs were put up to attract visitors but we need a balance of lots of vendors and buyers. One is no good without the other.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  trolleydriver on 8/15/2015, 11:44 am

Kelejan ... Yes 100% humidity equals rain. We have had plenty of rain over the last couple of days and more forecast for later today.

I hope you have a great time at the farmer's market. And watch out for that bear!

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  Kelejan on 8/15/2015, 1:34 pm

Just return from the farmers' market with chard, that I did not get much of this season, and oatmeal cookies that are delicious,  and one dozen huge organic eggs from happy chickens.

On return I picked up some more windfall apples, then a few minutes ago the bear returned and found nothing, poor thing, then I opened the window and said, in a very loud voice, BOO! and he turned around, looked at me and went back up the hillside.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  CapeCoddess on 8/15/2015, 1:44 pm

@Kelejan wrote:Just return from the farmers' market with chard, that I did not get much of this season, and oatmeal cookies that are delicious,  and one dozen huge organic eggs from happy chickens.

On return I picked up some more windfall apples, then a few minutes ago the bear returned and found nothing, poor thing, then I opened the window and said, in a very loud voice, BOO! and he turned around, looked at me and went back up the hillside.

LOL! I want to be you when I grow up.
What a Face
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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  Marc Iverson on 8/15/2015, 4:48 pm

LOL, yeah, CC -- I want to scare bears one day too!

trolley, glad your back is doing better.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  Kelejan on 8/15/2015, 4:49 pm

@CapeCoddess wrote:
@Kelejan wrote:
Tomorrow I will be picking pears for canning. I now realize why it is called "Retirement"  One gets tired. So much to do. How did I find time to go out to work?

I just got the best laugh from that, Kelejan!!!  Thank you.  I often say that work is interfering with my life.  Can't wait to 'get tired' physically instead of the mental 'mush for brains' that I come home with each night.

My garden & fruit trees seem to be about a week or so behind yours.  Our silly winter put us back about 2 weeks.  Did you also have a horrible winter?

CC
To be honest, CC, I always loved my work as I was self-employed and had no boss except for my customers AND I could take my dog to work and no-one could say NO! 
I always wondered what on earth I would do when I retired, and it took me a while to settle down and not look back. I have come to terms with retirement and now I enjoy it hugely. So many things that I have never tried before, even such domestic things as canning; I get a kick out of processing the food I grow myself for instance and being able to eat it throughout out the winter. Usually I have frozen or dehydrated stuff but the canning has given me so much more scope for having a good stockpile in case of bad times.

Last winter we had so little snow that I think it affected the garden somewhat. I knew we would have a shortage of water and that eventually water restrictions would be imposed.  Ours are not too severe like California's, just odd and even days depending on your house number, plus not between 11am and 5pm., so that is one reason why I have a combined SFG/wood-chip garden to decrease watering needs. There are fines involved if you are caught watering at the wrong times but so far I have not heard of anyone being fined so far.  So many house holders water their lawn every day, including half the roadway., even the City water the plants around them that are supposed to be desert plantings.

My main way of watering is to fill five-gallon buckets and let them sit in the sun and use that for hand-watering seedlings etc. Tor the last two summers I never used the hose to water the lawn  and I let the lawn-clippings lie where they fall and I have had the greenest "lawn" ever, full of little flowers etc.

I must admit that when I wrote that I opened the window to say "Boo!" to the bear, I only cracked it open about two inches. In addition, I have a deck that runs around two sides of my little house, and at the moment I have loads of wind-fall apples stores there in bags  waiting to be got rid of as I cannot put them in my hill-side compost heap where I throw everything that doe not go into my regular compost pile like sticks and small branches and weeds and surplus fall leaves and, and. . . . , as he/she would be in there like a shot.  So when I go to bed at night, both ends of the decking are shut off by wood panels  placed in slots that are used to keep the dog contained, and further bolstered by deck chairs on the stairs so that any bears will change their minds about going any further. I hope.

I now have the job of sorting out all these apples and  making apple sauce with the useable ones  and getting the rest out to the garbage collector on garbage day.  I cannot take them to to city compost dump as there is a BIG notice that says no fruit.  I really will have to severely trim that tree so that I can get to the top fruit as that is what is causing my problem at them moment and my neighbour will not pick up any fruit that falls on her side so it is my job to discourage that bear who is only doing what comes naturally. Not fair that she/he should be killed when only another couple of weeks will see the end of the apples. One of the disadvantages if living on the very edge of town  even though it is only five minutes walk to the town centre.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  Kelejan on 8/15/2015, 4:51 pm

@Marc Iverson wrote:LOL, yeah, CC -- I want to scare bears one day too!

trolley, glad your back is doing better.

But Marc, I only have one dog to help me, you have about 13?

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  Marc Iverson on 8/17/2015, 1:34 pm

Oh come on, nothing like that many!

We have 12.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  Kelejan on 8/17/2015, 6:57 pm

@Marc Iverson wrote:Oh come on, nothing like that many!

We have 12.

So sorry for for the exaggeration, Marc. Wink

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  Kelejan on 8/18/2015, 1:43 pm

Interesting entertainment this morning in my yard with a flock of at least twenty wild turkeys.

There were two males continually on guard, one obviously the alpha as he chastised the other one who was pecking the apple that the alpha wanted.  All the others happily wandered around, two of them having a dust bath on two of the mole hills that I had not yet flattened.

Most of the others wandered around the "lawn", pecking at things I could not see, and  having a great time in part of the BTE area. No damage anywhere that I could see.  They finally went away, following the alpha up the path to the hillside above me, then turning right to go on to the neighbours garden; the beta male stayed behind for a while making sure nothing followed, appearing to be looking hard in my direction where I was watching behind the window.  I am sure he knew something was there.

No bear for a day now; one of the turkeys had a great time turning through the turd that bear had left yesterday early morning.  Seeing it consists of 50% apples, the turkey had an easy time of it. Yesterday I only picked up three apple windfalls, but due to some wind during the night, quite a bagful this morning. I tell myself, every apple that falls is one less and it will ventually come to an end and I can stop making apple sauce.

Often times I would think I would like a fence surround my property, but I wonder what would happen if the bear or deer got in and felt trapped?

Yesterday I went to a friend's neighbour and picked about twenty pounds of pears in ten minutes.  Now I will wait for them to fully ripen and get them canned or dehydrated.  Still tomatoes to come and the garlic to plant.  Never been so busy in my life.  I am almost glad our gardening stops when the snow and ice come.  Then I can look forward to the next season with great anticipation.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  Marc Iverson on 8/18/2015, 2:41 pm

You sound very relaxed about the critter invasions in your yard. I would be more worried that they would damage stuff, or, if our dogs were around, that they would kill or maim a turkey, or get hurt chasing them(rough forest floor and lots of blackberry thorns) or fighting with them(birds go for the eyes!).

Grats on getting all those pears. I love a good pear, though getting them in the perfect stage of ripeness can take a good bit of luck. I don't recall where I read it, but remember reading that, if nothing quite ordinary happens to make the time window shorter, a pear is perfectly ripe for about five minutes.

" I am almost glad our gardening stops when the snow and ice come." I know the feeling -- that's how I felt last year come summer's end. Bought lots of seeds for fall planting and then just sorta slipped into "Mmmm.....nah!"

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  Kelejan on 8/21/2015, 1:01 am

Marc, usually the bears only stay around for a few days, then they move on along the length of the town. 

Finally I have almost caught up with  my harvest of apples.  Canned some and some is in the freezer to be used up first.  There are only a very few apples left on the tree, so there is little reason now for the bear to visit.  He got his picture in the local paper today, standing next to another small house like mine with the caption New Neighbors, Bears have already been making appearances in downtown Castlegar.  At least it alerts the local citizens that there is a bear around and to be on the look out.

Today has been very smokey from the forest fires in Washington State and our own fire near the golf course that is located between our city and the City of Trail.  When I look out of my window I can barely see the outline of Mount Sentinel across the Columbia River.  I have kept indoors most of the day but I still see youngsters going for training runs which I think is rather foolish, or maybe due to ignorance, as the very small particles from burning wood ash is not good for lungs, especially ones drawing in great amounts of air due to running.  I expect the smoke will continue for several more days as the pictures on TV coming from below the border are far worse the our above.  We have had very little rain for a long time and what we do get is very sporadic and  is nowhere near enough. So far no one in our area has lost their home. It can happen to anyone.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  Kelejan on 8/25/2015, 12:38 am

Things seem to be rather slow here in Canada.  I expect a lot of us are away on holiday.

The large bear has not been seen for a few days but there is another, smaller, one.
One of my neighbours kindly dumped a large bag of ripe plums on the table in my car port. I really wish she had not as it meant that I had to do something with them really quickly, also they are golden plums that do not make good jam etc but are supposed to eat as soon as they are ripe.

I think I have finally collected the last of the apples and have finished processing them.  Now I have to watch the pears so that I do not miss the ripeness window:
I am also in the middle of pickling beetroot and still have some beans etc. to process.

At least there is never time to be bored. Very Happy

I have not been outside much for a couple of days as the smoke is getting really bad now.  My friend who lives about five minutes away from me says that she went out today and found her eyes being very irritated.  Grand forks, a community about an hour's drive from us and very near the American border is on continual alert due to the largest fire ever in Washington State just across the border; so far it is uncontrolled and the wind is sweeping north. Canadian firefighters have gone down to help as the American are exhausted, and I think Australian and New Zealanders are on their way. Rock Creek, which I would drive past on the way to Vancouver lost  about thirty houses.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  sanderson on 8/25/2015, 1:01 am

For those in the way of smoke from the fires, I know it is really nasty, and can be dangerous for certain folks.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  trolleydriver on 8/25/2015, 12:13 pm

Kelejan ... You are having lost of fun with the wild life and the harvest of fruit.  Those fires are devastating.

Here in Ottawa, our gardens are showing signs of the summer season coming to an end.  It is especially evident in the perennial flower borders. There is one flowering plant we have near our pond that blooms in the late summer.  It has just started showing its colours so I know Fall is approaching.  Just 6 weeks to the first frost date.  Daytime temperatures are in the mid 20s Celsius and it is still humid (61% today).  The nights are cooling off (around 12 Celsius) and there is a ton of dew on everything when I go out in the morning.  Looks like we will warm up again to 28 C on the weekend.

I'm watching my honeydew melons expanding in size.  Those in the regular garden seem to be doing a little better than the ones in the SFG.  I'm not sure when to pick them.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  Kelejan on 8/25/2015, 1:32 pm

Trolley, I can't say I am really having lots of fun with the wildlife.

I must admit that I made a huge mistake last night before I retired early to bed to read my book. I woke up early, about 2am and had to see to Jazz as he was wakeful.

I let him out on the decking, you may remember that I had protected each end with boards place in slots?

Last night before I was clearing up the over-ripe plums placed on my table  in my car-port.  Well, I was distracted by them and took them indoors, but I completely forgot to lock the bear-proof handles on my garbage can where I had been placing the fruit debris to be taken away Wednesday morning, and the bear  had been  around and managed to open it and get out the contents. He/she had eaten  half the contents and the rest was strewn along the driveway and the bear will no doubt be around tonight to finish off.  They do remember things.

It is a hard lesson learned, and I do not think I will ever make that  mistake again.
I expect if I look up the bye-laws I would be due for a hefty fine. Anyway, this is the only place that will know of my stupidity.  Embarassed 

Please learn from it, good people.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  trolleydriver on 8/25/2015, 2:18 pm

Kelejan ... In some ways it must be amazing to have bears coming onto your property.  Please be careful.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  Kelejan on 8/25/2015, 4:27 pm

@trolleydriver wrote:Kelejan ... In some ways it must be amazing to have bears coming onto your property.  Please be careful.
I have been here since 1996 so we learned to live with them.  There are miles and miles of forest and mountain next to us. Our sub-division is the last one out of town  and our road bends back against the mountains. That is why we have a tunnel to go through if we walk to Downtown otherwise we would have to walk across some railway tracks.

Have seen deer, racoons, coyotes, a grizzly bear once, he was brown and a different shape to the black bear; him I would avoid at all cost, only once in 19 years.

Oh, and we had some rabbits for a couple of years but I believe someone trapped them.

I am going out now to face the smoke;  I have been in two days and already I am getting cabin fever. Very Happy

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  trolleydriver on 8/25/2015, 4:50 pm

Critters in our backyard from time to time include rabbits, raccoons, squirrels (resident), chipmunks (resident) and skunks. We have had herons feeding on the goldfish in the pond. Nearby we have deer and we used to have tons of groundhogs.  I think the city did something to get rid of the groundhogs that were really getting out of control.  The deer population also grows and they become a hazard for drivers especially on the edge of the greenbelt. One year a moose got into a backyard pool in another part of the city. Mrs Trolleydriver has never seen a bear in the wild.

We live on the edge of the greenbelt which separates the inner and older part of Ottawa from the newer suburbs. There are bears in the greenbelt as well as coyote, beaver, fisher, muskrat, fox, etc..

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greenbelt_(Ottawa)

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  Marc Iverson on 8/25/2015, 4:53 pm

@trolleydriver wrote:We have had herons feeding on the goldfish in the pond.

Heheh, same with us! They seem to favor the brightest ones, or maybe see them most easily, so the only survivors are the muddy browns.

Marc Iverson

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Join date : 2013-07-05
Age : 55
Location : SW Oregon

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

Post  FRED58 on 8/26/2015, 1:14 pm

What am I doing? Trying to catch up!

I work at a power plant, and we have a unit on an outage. The "critical path" sets the pace of the outage and is the worst place to be. I was on critical path for three weeks leading up to my vacation. I just got back from vacation, and the combination resulted in a lot of neglect to the garden. Watering was about all I could manage until I went away (I had someone water it while I was gone). I acquired lots of weeds (almost gone) and RABBITS! lots of devastation to the greens and carrots. My beagles were in the kennel for two weeks and the varmints invaded. I think they are all waiting to turn left in Albuquerque now.  

I have some baby pumpkin and some zucchinis. I've had four regular tomatoes from the garden, and by the looks of things, I will get about a bushel al at once. My tomatillo is still producing, and my various peppers are starting to ripen. Salsa soon!

On a side note: for vacation I was "camping"* at a conservation area near Brantford Ontario (a city of about 100,000 people, and the home town of Wayne Gretzky). While out for a paddle in my canoe with my grandson, we were able to get within about twenty feet from a bald eagle on the shore of the Grand River. Amazing, especially when you consider that one side of the river is the park, and the other is a residential neighborhood!


*It's not really camping in a popup trailer, but ut will have to do for now

FRED58

Male Posts : 145
Join date : 2015-03-25
Age : 58
Location : Kincardine, Ontario, Canada

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Re: CANADIAN REGION - What are you doing August 2015

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