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It's gardening time! - Elf M. Sternberg
It's gardening time!
It is really gardening season again. I can feel it in the air. The oak tree out front has just now started to sprout leaves; the apple trees in the back have been awake for a week now. Omaha mowed the entire lawn, front and back yesterday, and we pulled up at least 120 pounds in weeds alone. I cleaned off the western walkway as best as possible-- that used to be our best strawberry bed, but ever since the new retaining wall went in we've let it go to seed, and now I plan on cleaning it off and restoring it to its former glory. It's a good plan with one flaw: blackberries have found their way into the bed. The neighbor's yard is rife with 'em, and they're making their way into our yard. The war is on!

I also cleaned off all the ingresses to the house, all the way 'round, cutting a space back at least ten centimeters. We've had a problem with ants in the past and this year we know it's going to be bad; they're already showing up in the cracks of windows and under the front door. We're sealing and putting down fault lines of diatomaceous Earth in the closed gaps, but still, this season I think the ants are going to be another battle.

We have a sloped property, so we do have fill dirt requirements that need to be met annually. I wonder, if we spread 80lbs of compost across the lawn, mixed with some of the old fill dirt, would it even make a difference.

Kouryou-chan was wonderful all day, helping put away her clothes, rake leaves, and then when the neighborhood kids came out to play she asked if she could go over to the next kids' yard, and she did. They came over here and played in the massive tree house.

After all that, we were too tired to do anything. I had cooked dinner Friday night, catfish stirfry wraps, but for some reason it fell to me to cook it again Saturday, so I did. Dinner was Chardonnay Chicken with green beans and egg noodles, very yummy. I tried a wine called Senora de Solano Tempranillo. Tempranillo is apparently a varietal from Spain that is growing in popularity in Australia. If so, this can't be a common example because this wine was boring. One flat note without any burn or variety to it. But it was Trader Joe's at $4 and it was drinkable so it's not as if I tossed out my one glass. I was underwhelmed.

Current Mood: tired tired
Current Music: The Beatles, Helter Skelter

3 comments or Leave a comment
From: technoshaman Date: April 10th, 2005 10:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
Recipe for the Chardonnay Chicken? We just got some white cooking wine for just such an occasion....
elfs From: elfs Date: April 10th, 2005 11:35 pm (UTC) (Link)
Take chicken breasts and pound them flat with a meat hammer or rolling pin (put them under wax paper so as to not splatter everywhere). Dust them with salt, pepper, and flour, then saute' them in a pan on medium heat with one tablespoon of butter for four-five minutes on a side. Remove and set aside, keeping warm.

Toss into the pan one small shallot, minced, and 1.5 cups mushrooms, sliced, and saute' about five minutes, until the shallots are soft and the mushrooms browned.

Add 1 cup chardonnay or any dry white wine, and 2 cups chicken or vegetable broth. Bring to a boil, scraping bits off the bottom of the pan as much as possible. Let boil until it's down to 1/3rd its original volume, and use as a gravy. You might want to add the chicken to the mix for a minute to re-warm. Also goes good as a topping on the egg noodles.
mo_hair From: mo_hair Date: April 10th, 2005 10:52 pm (UTC) (Link)
ack... we have terrible ant problems here too. i expect another bad year, though perhaps the current transformation of south jersey into an equatorial climate (we've been drowning in rain since last september) may make it a lighter season. anyway, we've had success with the old fashioned line of pepper flakes at all the openings to our home (between the window and screen, doorways, etc.) good luck!
3 comments or Leave a comment