From top left: outdoor shower, cob oven, permeable patio, driveway, backyard,
front yard

How Does Our Garden Grow

The late batch of tomatoes that we planted in early summer now has reached the top of the bamboo trellises and we’ve spotted a few decent sized tomatoes, and it’s only a matter of time now before they ripen.   We are in a fall planting fury!

The weather’s been nice the past few days – cooler; however, tomorrow the cool off shore winds will change directions and the dry, hot desert wind we call Santa Ana’s will bring the temperatures back up to the mid to high 90’s.   The weather’s having trouble making up its mind once again.

Yesterday, the afternoon sky turned a hazy brown due to the fires that have been burning in the hills surrounding the Southland.

The peppers are prolific, seems that the unusual weather hasn’t bothered them any.

As we made deliveries to our clients yesterday the running joke among them was aboutspinach.   One guy jokingly asked if we had “brought him some spinach for lunch” and said something about Popeye losing his strength.

Imagine a parent now telling a kid, you better eat your spinach – it’s good for you.   Thanks to the practice of using toxic sludge our food supply is once again threatened.

Every time you flush your toilet or clean a paintbrush in your sink, you may be unwittingly contributing fertilizer used to grow the food in your pantry. Beginning in the early 1990s, millions of tons of potentially-toxic sewage sludge have been applied to millions of acres of America’s farmland as food crop fertilizer. Selling sewage sludge to farmers for use on cropland has been a favored government program for disposing of the unwanted byproducts from municipal wastewater treatment plants.
[Via Center for Food Safety ]

Summer’s end

Last Days of Summer

Yesterday was bread baking day in the cob oven, towards late afternoon there was an eerie orange-brown glow that descended on the Southland because of three local fires.

The last days of summer come to a close…

Pasadena, San Gabriel Mountains
Photo courtesy of Graham Owen

How Green Is Our Valley?

Facing no formal resistance Pasadena City Council members decided unanimously Monday to adopt new environmental policies that will put the city among some to the nation’s most eco friendly.
As part of the United Nations Green Cities Declaration and Urban Environmental Accords, the city is taking action to support environmental sustainability in such areas as limited waste, conserving energy and improving urban design.
In a concurrent pledge, the council adopted the US Conference of Mayors Climate Protection Agreement – setting targets for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions as called for by the Kyoto Protocols, which President Bush has refused to sign.
…. Mayor Bill Bogaard said he hopes other cities will join Pasadena in pressuring that company to adopt cleaner energy practices…
[Via Pasadena Weekly]


  1. stephanie says:

    Guess what the “experts” in Canada have suggested caused the E-coli outbreak? Farm workers not washing their hands!! Another suggested a deer may have pooped on the crop! Talk about blaming the least able to defend themselves.

  2. claire says:

    that sludge story is a bit scary.
    your garden is looking great, I love the thought of the goats popping into the house, they probably think they’re missing out on something exciting!