Sunday, September 15, 2019

It's Life, Jim But Not As We Know It

Looks like the seedling tray system is working well, I've already got a few sprouts popping up!

They're a few days early too, they're supposed to take 7-10 days to germinate but I saw the first signs of sprouting only 4 days after I started them. I guess that's a good sign that I'm doing something right!

As an aside, I wanted to check the exact phrasing for the quote in the title of the post, only to discover that it's not actually a quote from Star Trek itself, but instead from a parody song Star Trekkin'. Who knew?

Saturday, September 14, 2019

A Test Run

I decided to saddle up on Dirty Dozen and put a few miles on it to see what cycling to and from work would be like from my new house.

Northbound, southbound.

The answer: not bad, but it'll take a bit more time out of the day than I'd like. Most importantly, I wouldn't be able to make it to the office by 9am if I woke up at my usual time of 7am, and waking up earlier would likely fuck up my sleep schedule a bit too much.

Also the flat tire on the way back wasn't too awesome. Picked up a nail while coming into Saratoga. Real nice of the construction folks to actually secure cargo in the back of their ratty, broken-down pickup trucks.

Anyway, flat tires aside, it's a little over 1.5 hours wall time each way. The question now is whether I could trim that down significantly with an e-bike (class 3 so I can get boosted up to 28mph), enough so that I could roll into work at the usual time? Though for the moment the question is largely academic as e-road bikes (as opposed to the annoying flat-bar commuter bikes) are still in the early days and priced well above what I'd want to spend on a speculative buy.

I guess we'll see what the future brings in the next few years. Until then, I'll be enjoying my motorcycles.

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

The Greenest Thumb

A little water, some warm sunlight, and a week and a half later thousands of seedlings are poking their first leaves up out of the ground.

Unfortunately I only planted hundreds of seeds, and if my math degree prepared me at all for this situation I'm pretty sure that means that most if not all of these are weeds.

So, take two, let's try a different approach.

Friday, September 6, 2019


My back yard was apparently visited by some birds today. No idea what kind, apparently the type that poops a lot.

Got out the hose and gave everything a quick scrub and...

... well, I guess that's going to save me some sanding on the table. Good thing it's on the list for refinishing. The refinished chairs (4/6 done) stood up to the scrubbing quite nicely.

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

The Seeds Of Evil

Got myself some yarrow seeds on a lark to pretty up some of the blank dirt up behind my retaining wall.

These seeds are incredibly tiny. The photo doesn't really do it justice.

Anyway, planted them up this afternoon, and I'm hoping those popsicle sticks I used as markers don't end up being tiny seed tombstones. But if they do I've got plenty more seeds to try again I guess.

The irrigation isn't terribly functional. It's got some emitters but most of them seem to be some combination of clogged or broken, so I'll probably pull them out and install some lengths of drip line instead. In the mean time I'm watering manually with the hose.

Monday, September 2, 2019

The Mysteries Of Life

Me, owner of a set-back thermostat, sitting at home on a holiday Monday afternoon enjoying the late summer sun pouring in through the windows: Hmm, why's it so warm in here?

Sunday, September 1, 2019

Turning Over A New Leaf

So there's this shrub of some description in my back yard. Ugly as sin, mutilated with poor pruning and basically just weedy and leafbare.

When I moved in I took a "wait and see" approach to it to see if it might leaf out and redeem itself, but it remained looking basically like this the whole time, with just a few leaves and some tiny purple flowers. As the weeks turned into months I hatched a plan to replace it with this leftover... uh, no idea what it is but it's a neat looking plant.

It had just been sitting in this container since I moved in. There's a bunch of similar plants in the front yard and I imagine the former owners had some sort of plan for it, but my plan was simple: stick it in the hole in the ground I was about to make ripping out the ugly, weedy shrub.

Looks quite nice there, I must say. The digging was quite hard work as the soil here is pretty miserable hard-packed gravel and clay. If ever I find myself with the urge to redo the landscaping, I'll be sure to bring in a few truckloads of compost to amend the soil.