Saturday, September 26, 2009

Fall Containers

The obligatory chrysanthemum and a coleus not liking the fall dew.

Re-Landscaping in Front of the Fence - Part I

I'm working on re-landscaping the front of the fence, a start on getting our entire yard back in shape. I picked up a few plants at the annual Northwest Horticultural Society fall sale. I started small at the western side by the gate. I dug out an old scraggly azalea and the stump of another. Leslie had bought a Japanese maple (Acer palmatum dissectum ‘Crimson Queen’) at Costco about three years ago. It sat for that time happily in its gallon nursery pot. From the plant sale, I also planted a Hosta ‘Krossa Regal’ towards the back and up front Japanese Forest Grass (Hakonechloa macra). The maple may eventually overwhelm this corner, we’ll see. In the meantime, I will flesh this corner out with one or two smaller Hostas, a fern or two. We’ll see. I have to work my way down the line yet along the fence.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Day in Black Diamond

Work took me down to Black Diamond for a walk in the woods.

Common Centaury (Centaurium erythraea) - a native of Europe that grows in disturbed places such as where I found it here on an overgrown logging road.

The Common Puffball (Lycoperdon perlatum) - fall is mushroom time.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Cole Slaw

I went to the Yakima Fruit Market today.  One of my purchases was a head of white cabbage, grown right in the Kent Valley.  I scrounged a few things from the fridge and pantry and came up with a cole slaw recipe.  Goes like this:

1/2 head white cabbage - thinly sliced
1 red bell pepper - thinly sliced
1/2 yellow bell pepper - thinly sliced
1/2 cup sweet onion - thinly sliced
1 carrot - grated
1 green onion - thinly sliced
1/2 cup canola oil
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1 tsp green Tabasco sauce
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp ground pepper

Slice up the veggies and put them in a big bowl.  In a smaller bowl whisk the oil, vinegar, Tabasco, salt, and  pepper then dump into the big bowl of sliced veggies and mix in all up.  Refrigerate until ready to eat.


Our family made a spontaneous decision to drive out to Silverwood Theme Park way up in the Idaho Panhandle.  We headed Thursday night, stayed in Moses Lake, then continued on Friday for the park.  It was the Friday before Labor Day weekend and the place was unusually uncrowded.  We hit the rides first the Boulder Beach, the water park.  It was nice floating on the lazy river with a margarita.  The weather could have been ten degrees warmer.  Boulder Beach has great music.  The bluegrass-ragtime music in the amusement park wore me out.  Silverwood is a lot like Knott's Berry Farm but located in a beautiful mountain setting.  We stayed overnight in Coeur d'Alene then headed home with a stop in Spokane to check out the falls.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Pink Salmon

The bounty of the Pacific Northwest is unsurpassed anywhere.  Walking five minutes down to the shore of Puget Sound and landing a pink salmon epitomizes this bounty.  He was cleaned, filleted, and on the grill within an hour.  Pink salmon (Oncorhynchus gorbuscha) run on a two year life cycle and here in our area it's odd years only.  This was an abundant year for "humpies" as they are known because of the distinct hump the males get upon entering freshwater.
Pink Salmon - Life History