Thursday, April 24, 2014

Project dog house

An unexpected 2500€ towards car repairs killed the vacation budget, so it looks like we're homebound for a few months. One of the do-it-yourselfers that MotH is working on includes a new abode for the dynamic duo; one that will be better adapted for outdoor conditions like rain and snow. I'm working on a design for the outside plaque...something along the lines of Maddie's Bed & Breakfast. Heck, we might even get them a small pool.

We're getting a new house

Today's high: 20°C

Monday, April 7, 2014

It's like being in a dream

Well actually we were in this image. Sogno [SOHN-yoh] is italian for dream, and not far from ours, a village goes by that dreamy little name. The last 2 miles of paved road to Sogno is mostly shaded at 9am, and the lack of traffic on a Sunday morning means it's a serene walk with only our thoughts and the chirping of birds to accompany our footsteps. The only souls we met along the way were 3 other villagers, some goats and a donkey. The doxie and the westie couldn't have been happier.

Today's high: 21°C

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Back in the garden: Flower power!

It has been a long, cold wait for the new season to arrive, and unlike 2013, I think I can safely predict that this year, spring will be a nice one. We've had lots of sunny days and mild weather ranging in temperatures from 14° to 22°C during the day and 12° at night. The swiss chard from last year lived through the winter and is sprouting new leaves that are already 8 inches tall, and the italian parsley is going gangbusters even after having had a layer of snow sitting on top of it.

Flower power 2014

Several runs to garden nurseries around town is, in my book, like xmas all over again. The multitude of potted spring blossoms beckon like eye candy, but this year I made it a point to select flowers that will do well in an alpine climate and hopefully come back again next year. The only flowers that I've started from seed are pink morning glory and nasturtium. I'm counting on the bleeding heart to take over a corner of the front yard.

Flower power 2014

Primroses are cheap and come in so many color varieties that we're working on including all of them in the back garden to compete with the dandelions and nettles.

Felicia amelloides

I've never heard of blue daisies until last month. On a garden forum, it's been said that they will take over a spot if allowed (someone called them the "blue tanks"). The tiny flowers are delicate and don't last long, but that pop of blue color makes me smile in the morning.

Sotto il prugno

We bought an asian pear tree (Nijisseiki) to complete the 3 fruit trees concept - persimmons, plums and pears - in the front yard. Fingers crossed tight that we won't get a late cold snap, but right now during these fine sunny days, the place for a short nap is under the mirabelle plum.

Today's high: 15°C