Plantings around the farmhouse and junk hauled

In a month there will be blooms and other festive plant life!
Scrap wood, old fencing and other debris loaded by Tim, Sid and Bill. Diana was weed-whacking.
Water drains down from the wetland and pools in the road.
Checking on a patch of riparian plantings.
Always a lot of trimming involved in keeping the forest trails clear.

Mule’s Ear

In the field on the house side of Rock Creek

Mules Ears are our native sunflowers. These cheery bold perennials make the transition of our wild flowers from spring into real summer. So named for its long leaves it forms very permanent spreading colonies in clay soils in habitat. The brilliant yellow sun flower blossoms rise up on sturdy stems directly from the ground. Each ebullient large flower is about 4″ across. Blooms appear from late April to early June. This plant usually finishes blooming just as summer drought commences. Its a memorable sight in wild meadows where it blooms simultaneously with native Rosa nutkana and Farewell to spring (Clarkia amoena var. lindleyi) and Giant blue eyed mary (Collinsia grandiflora). Wonderful cut flower and immediate and popular pollinator perennial. This plant was once very common in the Willamette Valley but civilization has immensely shrunk its native range. Good, long lived garden plant that goes summer dormant quickly after blooming has ended. The leaves turn gray and brittle and can easily be removed then. Give it a summer rest w/ little to no summer water once established. Full sun to very light shade. Water to establish its first season then none in subsequent years. Fun to grow and LONG lived. To 14″ in bloom forming a plant several feet across. Moderate deer resistance. Native to the Portland city limits.  Oregon native plant

American Tree Farm signage

Our certification sign looks (and is) quite official
I picked this mirror without scoping out, much less measuring, the room. Sorry, Kay, you have to be a six footer to see yourself!
Better and slightly more fair to the shorties in the family.

Fence progress and rare Peacock Larkspur blooms

The fenceline between Doug’s property and ours. It won’t be on the absolute property line because of the trees.
Lots of old fencing wire is buried in riparian brush near Rock Creek.
Larkspur found on the house side of Rock Creek.
More larkspur
Bianca and the swimmin’ hole
Red-osier (aka Western) dogwood found alongside Rock Creek near the swimmin’ hole.
Cow parsnip
The lupines are blooming
The rare and lovely Peacock Larkspur!
Hard to see, but the Peacock Larkspur shows up in white.
The breezeway between the annex and the small garage has begun.
New water heater has been installed!

Water heater installation and more

Final (not quite) step as Sid prepares laundry room floor for the water heater installation.
Sid removed the old fence along Henkle Way and mowed next to the fence. The snowberry bushes that remain serve as dust barriers and animal habitat. Birds supposedly love snow berries.
Bill and Diana cleaned up the wire and the old posts from the fence removal. The metal was recycled in Corvallis, the rest went to the pile of stuff that is scheduled for removal in a week.
The pile is almost loaded.
Sid planted sticker free blackberries, raspberries and a Russian pomegranate alongside the border with one of our neighbors.
I can’t believe that this Scotch broom escaped our notice until today. Bill and Diana scouted the loop trail for limbs that inhibit travel (quite a few) and any escaped Scotch broom (this was not the only one).
Bill and Diana went to a lecture at OSU entitled “The Inviolable Biophysical Principles That Govern How a Forest Functions.” It was very interesting and Diana got this great t-shirt celebrating Peacock Larkspur, a rare native found at Shiver River.
John has cleared a lot of brush while fencing. We may rent a chipper as the bulk of the debris is cedar and having cedar chips for landscaping would be nice.

Fence progress, junk removal and more spring flowers

Sid and Bill demonstrating where the gate opening from the watershed road will be placed. Neighbor Doug was in agreement with the placement as it will serve to provide access to his portion of the property as well.
Diana, demonstrating the long line of posts that will soon have wire on them.
Hard to tell from this photo, but Sid is demonstrating where the fence meets the bank of Rock Creek on the stretch of fence that will go from Rock Creek to the watershed road.
Same stretch as described above.
Sid, John and Bill. John is highly allergic to poison oak and there is plenty of it on the portion of the fence between our neighbor Doug and Shiver River.
Sorting scrap wood from the good wood so that the scrap can be hauled away.
Too much scrap for the silver pick up. They will be back with a large trailer.
Lupine patch is thriving among the wild iris.
Large wood and a very clear and quiet Rock Creek.
Interesting plant.
Very interesting plant. Three tiers of leaves …
Checker Mallow

Finished pumphouse for City water and more

Inside are all the workings for the pump that keeps the City water pressure as it should be.
Shonnards will be cleaning up and planting fun things around the farmhouse before the wedding.
Fans added to the master bedroom and to Unk’s old room.

Wildlife and more!

If you look real close, you can see three coyotes in the field.
Bianca chased those rascals back into the woods.
Later, after the coyote sighting, Bianca found a bear ambling along in these woods, just off the Loop trail. Bianca was walking with Bill and I (Diana) when she suddenly froze, staring into the woods. We knew she had found something interesting … and sure enough, a black bear was headed up the hill in these woods! I missed catching the bear on film, but thought I would memorialize the spot . Very exciting.
The well bladder has a little house now. Or at least the beginning of a house.
It takes a long time for Sid to mow the field with our riding mower.
Bill cuts a fallen tree out of the field so mowing will be easier.
Me, resting after weed whacking nettles near our riparian plantings.