January 29, 2019

I came up from Oakland through the Delta today.  What most impressed me most was the flocks of birds on either side of the highway.  Low lying fields were flooded and instantly turned into bird sanctuaries.  In one flooded field I saw a flock of large white birds, perhaps egrets.  I did not know that egrets flocked together unless they are migrating.

After a week of desk work in Oakland,  I was ready for physical work, specifically digging out the beds in the back yard.  I started with the bed running the length of the house next to what will be the herb garden in a trough. At the edge of the lawn was a thick mat of bermuda grass that I went after with a will.  I have had good results from digging out as much as I can and applying Roundup to whatever remains.  Bermuda grass runners went everywhere, and I was digging out thick root clusters that pulled twelve to eighteen inches of runners with them.  I know I am only slightly discouraging the bermuda grass.  The area that I cleared will eventually be a raised bed, and hopefully poisoning and burying will be enough.

Mike came up to check on progress.  He has run the tractor and is keeping the grass trimmed on both sides of the driveway.  He also mowed around his house and now has a genuine olive grove – twenty-four trees that Gerry planted.  Tomorrow he hopes to run the tractor over the parade ground just below the barn.  The newly cleared bed has a water pipe and outflow;  we found a timer that Mike will install with piping for a drip system.  I hauled off and dumped a wheelbarrow of grass to end a warm sunny day.

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