Mid-May & spring is here

Nothing much happened last week and while I meant to write something I never got around to doing so. I gathered and cut firewood and I mowed some of the lawn. Wow-ee!

This week was more exciting.
Early Monday morning I went to a foot doctor that we’ve known for about 10 years. A piece of in-growing toe nail got cut and removed. I’ve been soaking using Epsom Salt –seems to be named after a town 15 miles SW of the Greenwich Observatory near London. The Cleveland Clinic explains the use but is not supportive of the use. The cleansing is good, then some ointment, and a wrap. If nothing else you monitor the wound and hope it heals.

On Thursday the pruners & friends “raclette” was held. The event is a celebrator rendition of the pruner’s lunch – using freshly cut vine wood for fire to heat sausage, potatoes, and cheese (scraping thereof gives the name).

If one searches for “raclette”, the images are of a meal with melted cheese served at a table. A few photos will show a chunk of cheese. Below is a photo of the real deal:

The fire-pit is to the left and has burned for a couple of hours producing lots of hot coals. We put some of those between freshly cut tree trunks (green, about 45% water). The cheese melts over the coals and then is pulled to the side where the plate awaits.

Last summer when my Damson Plums were ripe I gave them to Audrey. She put them in glass jars with a little sugar and (she claims) cheap vodka. Many recipes call for gin. This is an easy way to produce something that resembles Slivovitz.


The next photo shows me with a glass and her pouring for herself. Every one gets 2 or three plums (with pits) that maintain the distinctive, somewhat astringent taste.
This year the flowering and pollinating period was cool, wet, and windy. If the tree has enough fruit, we’ll have another go at this. Only abut half the fruit was used from last summer. The rest was wasted.

There was a variety of other foods that had little to do with the pruner’s meal, but we ate them anyway. Thanks to all the talented cooks and to Phyllis and Cameron (White Heron Cellars) for hosting.

Today (Saturday) had both sun and rain. I went out and took photos of three flowering plants.


Service Berry


White Lupine
Not: USCGC White Lupine, but its namesake
White Silky Lupine (Lupinus sericeus)

The photo is of White Silky Lupine.

The things I find on-line just say that white is uncommon. However, here it blooms earlier than the purple. An on-line photo has one without the flowers open and they are very pink. Mine are fully open and have some pink therein. I think the white and purple/blue are distinctly different because of the bloom time.
Because the (new & growing) plant is toxic to some animals most of the Washington State research papers focus on that aspect. Someone must know about the colors and bloom times, but I haven’t found it.

From the Naneum Fan