Topics That Get My Attention

Category: Whidbey

About Whidbey Island

Garry Oaks

These are 4  of the 5 Garry Oaks I have planted in the last 3 years. They are all on a hillside facing west. I ground is mostly sand so they have excellent drainage. The largest tree was purchased from a tree nursery about 2 and a half years ago it is now about 12 feet tall. 

Fruit Trees

Planted five different fruit on our property. The location seems excellent, full sun for a majority of the day. The soil has good drainage mostly sand with some organic content, I added a half bag of compost to each tree.

Akane Apple, Cosmic Crisp Apple, Frost Peach, Rainier Cherry,  Angela Cherry

Trees are caged with metal fencing and heavy steel poles, each cage is approximately 48 inches in diameter.

Planning a garden in the country

Living in the country on an island requires a different approach to gardening. When you are surrounded by native trees, shrubs, weeds and grasses the choices you make for your landscaping should take the local plants into consideration. What follows is a list or assemblage of native plant resources. 

Individual plants

Grass Window

GRASS window – Olsynium douglasii

Black Huckleberry   

Nootka Rose 

Rosa rugosa 

Rosa woodsii (Wood’s Rose) 

Achillea ‘Paprika’   ⊗  ♦

Bearberry (Arctostaphylos uva-ursi)  

Prairie Onion – Allium stellatum

Camassia  

Beach Strawberry  Fragaria chiloensis

Manzanita

Yamhill Hazelnut

Helianthus nuttallii

 

Video:

10 Best-Performing Native Plants in my Garden

Garry Oak Habitat & Fire

Hawks, Quail, Spotted Towhee and Many More

Living on the edge of a 500 acre lagoon and wetland puts me in the middle of a massive wildlife refuge. I am trying to identify all the birds I see, in the course of a week, but it is tough. I see many of them at  a distance and it may not show itself completely. Many of these little guys such as junco, warblers or American dipper have a similar look. I would like to invest in a large telephoto lense so I can get good closeups, that may happen, good ones are expensive.

Living on a wetland also makes me want to understand the native plant life and how to restore it. The himalayan blackberry and the canary grass have invaded the area in a big way and getting rid of them is not trivial. Eventually I will start posting photos of the birds and landscape.

Till then here is a teaser  –

Digital Scrapbook at ArchDaily

My regular routine each morning is to wake an hour or two before Flora. I make a cup of coffee in my Bialetti Moka Express coffee maker and have a piece of toast or a bowl of granola with fruit. Then I sit at the computer and open my email and start deleting unwanted messages. I do this quickly. When I select the message from ArchDaily I open it instead of deleting. I enjoy the daily offering from this web site. It survey’s architectural projects from all over the earth.   Each email is chock full of beautiful photos and drawings from world class architectural firms.

Flora and I are moving to the country and we need to be creative to transform our late forties modern ranch house into  a place we can love, like the house we are leaving in the Fremont Neighborhood. I see an example of something I think is inspiring and I save the photo or project to a folder on the Archdaily site.  I am using it like a scrapbook.  The Web is perfectly suited for this.

The site requires a username and password to collect projects or photos, there is no charge and the the site does’t share your information. If you want to look at what I have collected you need to login.

My collection of inspiring photos 

Moving to the Country

After many years living in the Fremont neighborhood of Seattle, my wife and I are going to move to the country. An island to be exact. We will be taking on a Mid Century Modern rambler that sits on the edge of a large wetland. The wetland is over 800 square acres in size and is protected by the state and a land conservancy. I say taking on because this house, built in 1943, has many faults. Many of the systems of the house need replacing. It is going to be a large undertaking, but the work  should be satisfying.

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