Friday, January 27, 2012

Awaiting Developments

   We are expecting some nasty weather today, and the red sky this morning certainly seemed to underline the weather office's predictions. I have a bit of time - the snow will start at noon, they say - so I must fill up a big water bucket and a couple of pots. We have materials for making sandwiches if we can't cook, and of course the wood furnace works without the fan - not as effectively, but it does work. We just have to take a panel off at the back, and it circulates by taking in air from the basement.  I don't know how long it will work before the extremities of the house freeze - we've only had to do it for a few hours so far.
   In bad news, I've lost, misplaced, or can't find one of Katie's mittens! It's most frustrating, as I have finished the hat, but don't think I have enough yarn to make another mitten (nor do I want to do so!). I've looked in the car, but I don't think I took it with me on Wednesday.  I took the one which needed the ends darned in, because I could do that in the car, and I took the hat to knit on. Perhaps I put the finished one in a safe place? But where?  The alpaca-and-angora that I used to line the brim has turned out well. I made it a few stitches smaller than the brim (86 vs. 92) so it wouldn't be too bulky, and then I increased up to 92 when I knit the last row in the purple main yarn, as I didn't want it to show white on the right side, and that seems to have worked as well. It would be a great set if I could find the other wretched mitten!
   I've been having a regular orgy of garden TV watching, reviewing all three seasons of Beechgrove Garden. What a great show! I am always amazed, however, when they plant some really tender plant from South Africa or New Zealand and then are surprised when it gets killed! (We know better than that here in Canada, right??) Personally I'm with Jim McColl - you can keep your tree ferns. Anna Pavord's book tells me why they do it, however - Britain has an amazing climate, so that plants from all over the earth will thrive there - in some places anyway. Perhaps not in Aberdeen, however!
     I have been reading up on the bush cherries I ordered from Veseys - they are hardy to -40 because they were developed for the Prairies - and they are bush because they were meant for mechanized harvest. However, 2 metres high is great for hand-picking as well! I looked for garden blogs about them - hoping someone has some hands-on experience - but nothing so far. I'll have to write mine up myself! It looks like they can be cordoned, however - they recommend goblet pruning on one site. The developer of the plants has a handbook you can order - for $30 - but from other articles I've read by him,  it is probably all about commercial production. Anyway, my three are from the Romance series - Romeo, Juliette, and Crimson Passion. They are cooking, or sour, cherries, and run from early August to mid-September in harvest time. And they will start to bear in three years. So glad I bought that cherry pitter last year!  The longer you leave them on the bush the sweeter they become, and they can reportedly be eaten fresh. Mmm.
*In news from Toronto, J's POW vest fits! I am pleased. Haven't heard from Em so I don't know about her Cloisonee yet. Awaiting developments indeed. It's noon, and no sign of snow yet. 

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