February 19, 2019

I drove up through the Delta at midday.  Bright sun brought some relief to cold overnight temperatures in the 40s.  The fruit trees are just beginning to blossom along the levee road.  Should be quite a sight in another week or two.

I stopped by Annie’s on my way out of Oakland.  I still can find no replacement rhaphiolepis – turns out that it is marketed exclusively by Walmart.  I did find several yarrows (achillea) in the Natives Section, not the Drought Tolerant Section even though they are drought tolerant and deer resistant.  The traditional yarrow is a goldenrod yellow, and Annie’s had the white and a beautiful salmon.  I reassured the clerk that I did indeed want two salmons and one white for the back yard.  She also cautioned me about the smell when yarrow is pruned.  Not an issue for me – that musty smell reminds me of sun-drenched and wind-swept walks along the Mendocino and Aptos headlands above the Pacific.

I had an hour at the end of the day to plant the Swiss chard and red lettuce and to weed the onion bed.  I followed what I believe is a French method to plant in doubles.  I will have time this week to water in the lettuces to give them a good start, and hope for salad by the end of March.  I also watered the newly pruned plants and was delighted to see that the fortnight lilies were already sending out new leaves.

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