May, 2008

Weed Varieties

Today was very productive.  I got a good start on pulling the infestation of weeds that took over the garden during these last two weeks of constant rain.  I can’t believe how many there are – and how tall they are!!  I have three basic types of weeds: the first and worst I refer to as “the strangler“.  It’s a viney number that climbs up plants and wraps itself around and around until the plant underneath basically suffocates and dies.  These chappies have super long roots that run horizontally under ground.  They’re tricky to deal with because you think you’ve pulled out the weed and then find that it’s attached to a clandestine horizontal carrot with millions of other roots branching out and just waiting to pop up and strangle your next plant.  Agressive little buggers.

The second is a happy, tree-like weed with soft fuzzy leaves.  It grows tall but is easy to pull out.  And once it’s out it’s out.  Nothing too sneaky about this one, except for the surprising quickness with which it regenerates creating a mini forest where you once planted lettuce.

The third weed is what I like to call “heavy-duty grass“.  I know what you’re thinking;  grass, shira?  Big deal.  But it’s HARD grass and it REFUSES to come out of the ground when you yank it.  It’s practically impossible to get to the root of these suckers, and so you know it’s going to grow back in like two days while your back is turned.  Evil.  I have quite a large patch of heavy-duty grass that’s going to meet the weed wacker and a hoe tomorrow.

Miracle Berries & A Favorite Picture

boat.jpgHave you heard about miracle berries??  They look like oblong cranberries and trick your tongue into experiencing flavors in a new way.  Apparently they’re all the rage in NYC.  I’m dying to try one!!  Check out this New York Times article for the juicy details.

This is about the only decent picture of me and the bros that’s been taken in the last ten years.  There are lots of cute ones from when we were little, but now that we’re older I guess we’re not as photogenic… 

He we are at the lake on the ol’ Gypsy Star (a.k.a. “You What?!”) which unfortunately hasn’t seen the water in at least two years. Big progress on the Rock this year – the new kitchen is in and all the drywalling is done.  Dad built a deck last weekend, can’t wait to see it all!!

A Poem By Ben


I thought I would share with you all this poem my brother Ben wrote for me on my last birthday.  

Pay particular attention to his creative sense of spelling, which I, for one, find most inspirational. 

Here’s the recap incase you can’t read his handwriting:

“Your a Glimmering skunk linging in the wind.

A beautiful sponge, withering from essance

A Shimmering Gem flowing in a river of sewage.

An overessant piece of pit-hair dangling off the arm of a pre-mature, european hooker.

A blossoming wart pussing with


Just remember folks, poetry does not always have to be grammatically correct.

Thanks, Ben!  I’ve always thought of you as a Shimmering Gem flowing in a river of sewage too.  🙂



Rain Rain Go Away

Oh my gawd.  It’s been raining for 12 days straight!  I can’t take it anymore.  Tomorrow I’m going to have to resort to the old stand-bys: rain dances & children’s songs.  Augh!  Stop already! 

Il Orto 2008

cipolla.jpgWell, here you go, folks: the full documentary of the 2008 garden! (view fullscreen – press F11)

Well, perhaps I should say “part one: tilling & seeding” of the 2008 garden documentary.

It’s raining here today and is supposed to rain all weekend, which will be good for my freshly planted produce! 

We put in quite a variety this year: mint, basil, chives, sage, rosemary, parsley, two kinds of tomatoes (cuore di bue and plum), four kinds of peppers, an eggplant, two kinds of zucchini (standard and trombette – A climbing Italian squash that produces long trumpet shaped lime green fruit and tastes similar to a mild artichoke), pumpkins (for Halloween), onions, spring onions, four kinds of lettuce (different mescluns), and of course we have our prize-winning artichokes.

I also planted some flowers and am hoping for a hedge of giant zinnia…though the seeds don’t seem to be doing much yet.  I have say I’m quite attached to this little patch of earth.  Everyday after work I go out and putter around in the orto (garden).  It seems there’s always something to do – pull weeds, water, check up on things…After ten hours in front of a computer this puttering time is very theraputic.

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