House projects are moving right along. We decided to finish the trim on the back of the house, which is needed to reattach the gutters which have been gone since Sean redid the siding last fall. Last week I took the truck into Lowes and loaded it up with cedar trim which I then painted.....in 103 degree heat. It was miserable but it's done and now we are blessed with a cool spell (today it was 89 degrees). So hubby was able to get a large majority of it hung today and will finish up the rest tomorrow. It looks lovely. Next thing is framing of the deck.
I've been doing a little landscaping lately and needed to find a good, inexpensive source for river rock. In the past I've bought the 40 pound bags from Lowes and they don't go very far. So I called around and found a local garden store that sold river rock by the skid loader scoop for $98. One scoop is a ton so I had to have half a scoop since my truck is a half ton truck. Half a ton of rock is actually a pretty decent size pile and I filled up the dump cart four times. I'll be back for more soon I'm sure.
The garden is growing well. The grasshoppers and I have an understanding, I let them have my broccoli, carrots, onions and bush beans and in return they aren't going to eat my squash, cantaloup, tomatoes or sweet corn. If they do, they will die. It will be war. I still go out weekly and spray with the neem oil. It's tiring and takes about an hour, and now that the garden is growing larger and larger it's taking longer. What's sad is that I sprayed the onions, beans, carrots and broccoli with neem oil weekly and the grasshoppers still ate them down to the ground.....so I don't know if the darn stuff is even doing anything. Oh well, I feel like I'm doing something. We are drowning in squash. Every kind of squash you could ever want, we got it. I've made zucchini bread, sauteed it, made fritters and even zucchini brownies (which were a huge hit). I'd hate to say I'm squashed out, but I think I am. And I haven't even figured out what to do with the patty pan squash. Perhaps next year I'll keep it to two varies instead of five.
The kids are there for scale and silliness. They love to make faces for the camera these days. The zinnias just started to bloom and I just love em. They are, by far, my favorite garden flower. You know why? Because I think a monkey could grow them. You put a seed in the ground and forget about them. Four weeks later a happy little flower blooms. They bring wonderful pollinators to the garden which up your yield. It's a win win. next year: more zinnias.