Wet and Wild on Zen Mountain

Getting wet and wild

The birds hanging around Zen for the summer had a great day Saturday playing in the fountains or flying through the sprinkler set up while Ma and I worked in the fields and gardens.

The fountains run during the days now that we have them cleaned up and our summer crew make the most of them with the temps rising. First thing in the mornings we check the pond level then turn the fountain back on. In no time the birds are lining up for their morning baths.

I had seen a Western Tanager Male in our Ash tree in the Eden gardens Saturday morning watching the line up for the pool. These guys seldom come through so I grabbed up the camera and slowly headed around the house for a pic. BY the time I got there he had already taken off. I did get a few more pictures of birds and bees however.

Through out the day birds continued to hit the pool while Ma worked close by.

I had a sprinkler running in the gardens to help Ma get the weeds loose also giving the birds a chance for a quick shower when the ponds were full.

Zen Mountain Weed (s)

Yeh.. the kind that you haul out by the wheel barrow loads.

Ma spent pretty much every day working on weeds in the gardens now that her back is doing better. I still have to give her grief to keep her from overdoing. A couple hours a day on work days as well as double that on days off.

Load after load ends up by the pit . We are getting a small mountain going after falling behind between Ma’s back and the warmer weather this spring.

Ma has made a heck of a dent but there is still a lot to do. Once she gets the thick stuff down it wont be too bad keeping up.

In the mean time , Ma usually has a rooster tail of sod flying over her back while I am working on the other projects.

9-1-1 in the gardens

We have been working on building the nutrients in the Zen gardens . Working out the balances that we need per garden to get things going as well as for those plants and trees that have been here for awhile has kept us on our toes.

It all started with a suddenly sickly Pear tree. She was low on Nitrogen. For us going the organic route is best. Between composts are the organic fertilizers it is a slow but steady improvement. This is why it generally takes three years for a garden to really start producing. We are jumping things up a bit this year going by the last few seasons and working things out a little better.

Also adding liquid feedings helps a lot . They can fix things quicker than slow release but of course burn out faster. Using both , checking the numbers , keeping notes will hopefully get things producing a little better this season. We are already seeing some results.

Don’t step on the grass Sam

Our asparagus plants are kicking in , both last year’s and this year’s plants. Saturday a bunch of new little spears popped up from the latest plantings. Far too small to pick , they will fern out and the plants will root out.

Last year’s purple asparagus plants didn’t take off. This year’s , however, are popping up already.

The plants being in the “Test Garden” , they have the best home up here. We have had enough for a couple nice sized meals this season with more still large enough to pick. Next year we should be doing very well.

Buzz Cut

Back out into the fields. I ran “Lil Red” until she simply refused to mow any more. I am sure it is the air filter , things are getting dry up here with the temps and the winds. She was too warm for me to mess with Saturday so I parked her and grabbed the Micro Tractor to finish up. I will take a look this coming weekend when she is cool and hopefully my hands work better.

Prepping for fire dangers before July is always a long road. Having Lil Red in mostly working order this year helps a lot… The crazy rate the fields are growing..Not so much!

Some areas have started to show signs of going dormant though it is still early , others are growing about a foot a week.

Zen’s quest for fire

With our class reunion getting ever closer Tryx still has a lot of work ahead of us. We are hoping to get together at least a couple times before but this time of year is pretty crazy. If nothing hits the ” Nay” list , we are still looking at about eight more songs to pull from the 70s .

I mentioned last week that I had fallen backwards over one of my amps and both guitars I had with me which had fixed my hands …Short term it seems.

Friday evening I had noticed tingling in my right arm from elbow to fingers. Sunday night the tingling was up to my armpit and playing was getting hard again.

By Monday night , after work , Both arms, hands , legs and feet were tingling and going numb . By Wednesday they were cold and my playing was down to about fifteen minutes before my hands were so swollen I couldn’t grasp a pick or finger pick for that matter.

The annoying thing is my very first job at work literally has me running to the restroom. To add insult to injury , I am unable to open the damn top to the Excedrin.

Thursday is the soonest I can get in to the doc. We , at least , know that it is a pinched nerve . Better than something worse.  As I type my middle, ring and picky fingers on both hands have gone numb…grrr

So for the now I only managed to work on five new songs . I’ll have some serious catching up to do hopefully this coming weekend.

Not whining or making some excuses , it simply is .

Sunday Sunday Sunday

To jump back a bit , we smoked cheese Saturday . I tossed in some ribs to smoke as well. One evening this week Ma will toss them into the oven to get a little more tender and be ready for when I make it home.

Ma made German Potato Salad to go with the ribs..Well , that just made me hungry so I set up Sweet Beans for Ma to toss in as well to bake down a bit. Ok NOW I started getting my tummy rumbling so we put together some Mac salad as well.

We have that as well as a Baked Tater one night , Swordfish another and Crab cakes to finish off our short week.

The only thing left was soup. Home made bread was already made for the week.

I used pork stew meat and Garfunkle seasonings to set up a bean and barley veggie soup.

I didn’t manage much else today after getting beat up on the tractors on Saturday. Grinding the nerve round in my back as I bounced around , it had the choice of popping back into place or just making everything worse… yeah , that one.

Final thoughts

I have a four day work week coming up. Thank goodness , every day is torture right now, but no storm lasts forever.

Thursday hopefully something will get fixed.

I have a ton of work to catch up on with our music. I enjoy doing it as I can. I miss pushing myself as I did before this, but that lead to problems as well. I only have a few things I want to work out then it is just a matter of digging deeper as I can. It is all good.

Hopefully Lil Red will be back up and running back to normal so I can catch up on the lower areas up here soon. It can only be a couple different things at worst.

Zen park

The morning still  dark , Ma and I made our way around the gardens , getting a first look before the sun rises at what we want to get done.

Walking through Hummie Garden we can hear a droning through the flowers. Bumble Bees already at work beating the early bird to breakfast.


The songs of birds as they come in to Zen’s gardens . The Bluebirds getting busy feeding their wee little ones as they peep away. No sooner than one leaves the perch the other lands stuffing bugs into the maws of the little gluttons.


Ma turns on the fountain. The birds start lining up around the trees bushes and fence line.

The songs of Goldfinches fill the garden as they make their way in.


Ma is already picking at weeds before the sun begins to rise.

I turn on a fan sprinkler to soften the ground before Ma gets crazy digging . The birds see the spray , flying in for a quick shower before they head out for breakfast.

Bumbles bopping out from flower to flower humming away as they ate .

Hummie makes a pass by seeing us on the other side of the house than normal.


The air is filled with sounds of the birds and bees….

Looks like it’s going to be….

Just another day on Zen Mountain





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