|Maple tree in front of house|
Mike and I went to the farm yesterday (Wed., April 5) – our first trip of 2017. The grader was working on the lower end of Gilbert Grade, and indeed the road is rough and needs attention. On top, we kicked up dust as we traveled; wetness seems to be confined to low places in fields. At our lane, the low spot near the culvert had washed a bit, but we were able to cross.
Several branches had broken out of the big maple in the front yard. I asked Mike to leave it long enough for me to get a picture. “Don’t worry,” he laughed, “you’ll have plenty of time.”
In order to understand what happened here, you have to remember that the hard freezes began to happen quickly last fall. On the first of December we went to the farmhouse to turn off the water, expecting to return before Christmas. Unfortunately, due to continued cold and snow, that didn't happen. Mike and son Clint walked in from the road on December 30 in order to check on the house and bring out what they could. The cold winter didn’t let up, and then it was wet. And that brings us to today.
|House from pond|
Entering the house, the first thing I noticed was that condiments and a few other things had been left in the fridge and were now thawed. I threw out most everything. I always resolve that this shall not happen to me again, but who knows.
Turning on the water didn’t go well. Suffice it to say, there’s a leak somewhere. Mike is trying to reach the plumber even as I write. We’ve always pitied my grandparents because they lived in this place without plumbing, but on occasions like this, they get the last laugh. Yes, I’m sure I hear them laughing. Mike keeps a five-gallon jug of water for emergency purposes, and I used that to clean the refrigerator.
|Munched apple tree|
The day being pleasant -- the temp was right around 60 and actually warmer outside than in the house – I toured the yard. Unfortunately, things outside also sustained damage. Among our newer plantings, the sweet cherry tree seems to have survived, but the deer crumpled the fencing around our young apple tree and nibbled it but good. I don’t know if it will survive the summer heat. The struggling maple trees were also noshed and used for antler grooming. They need to be gone now.
|Crown Imperials & daffodils|
The deer even nibbled the lilac bushes on the bank behind the house. Lilacs are thought to be deer-resistant, but you can’t count on a deer not to nibble.
|Lilacs bushes in compound|
On a positive note, the lilacs and other plantings in the fenced area look great! If they survive the rodent activity (of which there is plenty), they should have a good year. The rhubarb is coming back and so are the strawberries. The Crown Imperials look great and will bloom soon.
|Hallie planted these daffodils|
|Daffodils in the grove|
And through it all, the daffodils smile and bob. I can always depend on the daffodils. Perhaps I need more daffodils. Hallie says I just need to crochet for a day or two in order to allay discouragement and set a fresh course. Sounds good to me -- even if it's doll clothes and machine embroidery.
We brought the 4-wheeler back to town with us so Clint can borrow it. We avoided the grade and construction on Hwy 12 and came back through Nezperce on Hwy 95. KW
|A view to the north|