September 2, 2017
I wish I had some good news about the planet, but I do not. The only good news is that this living hell is about to implode. I have been in a state of overwhelm all summer to break out of this false reality. Those who succeed at that might be able to escape this coming apocalypse, at least that's what I'm aiming at. The less tied you are to the Matrix, the better chance you have to survive its destruction.
But that doesn't make it any easier for me to watch the utter destruction of my farm, the love of my life, being slowly put to death. I spent decades building my organic soil in order to create a safe haven to support the growth of healthy food and to live in harmony with the Earth's natural order. But that has all been destroyed. At one point several years ago, I was doing four Farmer's Markets a week. I got nowhere. This area is about the most pathetic bunch of people. They prefer to buy produce from California at the grocery store that has been sitting in a truck for a week. For the past few years, it seemed there was a Farmer's Market springing up everywhere. Most of them are gone now, and I'm not sure there are very many people who have food to sell. Who can grow anything in these dark, dark, dark days—strings of them where not a speck of sunshine can been seen. IN AUGUST! IN OHIO!! Add to that, of course, the non-stop onslaught of poisons from the skies, and what can grow? Weeds, of course. Huge, thick weeds. Weeds, like disease, are a sign of a serious imbalance of the system.
I had another near-drowning mishap, although this was nowhere near as serious as the chipmunk. It was, I believe, a morning in early August when I went to open the greenhouse. I am used to many birds coming and going, but they can get out even when the doors are closed. But this morning, they were flapping and squawking like mad. I opened the doors and shutter, and some flew out, but most remained. I finally heard another flapping, and it was coming from my trashcan under the interior downspout. Fortunately, I had used most of the collected water, so there was only about three to five inches in it, but a young bird, a sparrow again, had fallen in. I grabbed my little pitcher and scooped her up, then deposited her on the ground, where she quickly flew away.
I have really missed my milk snakes this summer. I saw one in the greenhouse, but the photo came out blurred. I have a couple that live in the house all winter. They travel together, entwined. It is really quite romantic. They usually stay in between the walls, but occasionally I will see them draped over a doorway, or befuddled because they got in and don't know how to get out. I usually manage to catch one, and the other disappears. They don't bother me at all, and they absolutely deal with the mouse problem. I know they've left for the summer, because I caught a mouse the other day in a trap, which I REALLY hate. I much prefer nature to deal with pest control.
I did have a garter snake family living on my porch this summer, however. One was usually curled up in my rag basket, and another prefered hiding under the tarp over the well, just off the porch. And I saw a really huge one on my steps. I knew milk snakes got really big, but I never saw such a big garter snake.
Lately I have had a young opposum, with the longest nose I have ever seen, come visit me over night. He likes to play in the trees around my house, and sometimes he explores the contents of my recyling bags, (which I finally hauled away), and he also likes to chew on tissues and paper towels deposited in the wastebasket I keep on the porch.
The plant photos below were taken at the end of July and early August as I got my tomato field planted. As I have mentioned before, I don't even try to transplant tomatoes until they actually have fruits and blossoms, because they just won't grow. Until then, I keep them in the greenhouse, where they grow fast. I have been dumping the contents of my kitchen garbage bucket in one of my bins, and keeping it filled with water. Yeah, it stinks, but the water is swarming with soluble nutrients that can be instantly utilized by plants. These past couple week, however, with all this darkness, not much of anything has grown, inside the greenhouse, or out. and it has been so fricken cold. It didn't even reach 62 degrees today. Of course, all of you reading this realize this is a totally chemically-nucleated cooldown—there's nothing "natural" about it.
As I had mentioned before, this lack of sunlight had created a spindly problem with many of my transplants. Even after the plants developed, the stems retained a brittleness. Before I transplant them, I bring them out of the greenhouse for a week or so, and the stems usually harden-off. However, some still do break, but I've discovered that, unless they are totally severed, they can be mended. I use masking tape, and carefully fit the stem back as it was, then tape it. If it is a very heavy stem, I build a little splint with a stick, (anchoring it in the dirt), then tie the injured stem for support. In most cases, there will not even be much wilting, and I have rarely had this technique fail. It doesn't work on all plants, but it works very well with tomatoes and tomatillos. Below are two different examples of this technique.