Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Block 14

Good day to you, m'ladies! How is everything in your world this lovely day? Most wondrous, I hope!

I've finished Block 14! WooHoo! ;0)
Block 14
This is the middle block on the top of the outer ring of blocks. Stitches used in this block are Pekinese, chevron, herringbone, cretan, buttonhole, feather, chain and back stitch. Threads used were #8 perle cotton, silk floss and variagated pima cotton (Caron Watercolours). None of the seam treatments are extra special, but they do continue the monochromatic theme I've been striving for across the top of this quilt. I am soooo close to finishing these outer blocks I can taste it! Just one more and then I get to do the moon block... I've been saving it for last! Kind of like I save the best bite of toast for last... the middle part with lots of butter. LOL!

We've also been getting started on our vegetable garden. Glenn has been sick so we haven't been able to get the fence up, which is what I wanted to do first. I was getting antsy though, so we started on the beds last weekend. We're trying lasagna gardening, since we are now a couple of old farts and double digging (and just plain digging in general) is not something we want to try in this clay soil. We put down a layer of cardboard first, then a thick layer of grass clippings we've been stockpiling for the past two years. We prepared 2 beds, the back one is maybe 12' (3.6 meters) and the front bed is maybe 15' (4.6 meters). We'll continue to extend them (when we get some more cardboard) until they are close to the concrete pad in front of the shed.
Lasagna beds - started
The stockpile of grass is in the rear of the photo, by the shed. It did extend out close to the back bed, so that area is grass free. After the layer of dried & slightly composted grass, we watered it well. This coming weekend we'll put down a couple more layers, probably some manure, then more grass clippings, and then some bagged soil. When the trees start to really lose their leaves, we'll add those to the top of the bed. We may try planting something this fall if we can get the fence in. If not, then it should really be in good shape for spring planting in February and March... that's spring planting time in Phoenix!

The giant green wall is an 8' (2.4 meters) block wall covered in trumpet creeper and catsclaw vines that extends the full length of the back yard. The walls along the side of the backyard are 6' (1.8 meters). We love having that big block wall there, especially covered so heavily in vines. It really gives us a feeling of protection and provides a great backdrop for the yard.

During a monsoon storm this summer we had a microburst right in the center of Phoenix. Luckily, we were only on the edge of it and it took out the top few feet of our fig tree (just a few blocks away it tore down power lines, knocked over brick walls and tore up trees by their roots), so last weekend we also cut the majority of the fig tree down.
Fig tree - cut down
The tree had two huge dead limbs on, too, so we cut it pretty low. It still needs to go a little lower, to get below the junction of the three big limbs, but it was getting dark so we decided using a chain saw at dusk wasn't such a good idea! We'll finish it this coming weekend, since the sun is pretty much down by the time we get home from work these days. All in all, it was a good start on getting the backyard in shape!

Well, I guess I've "talked" enough this evening... I'm getting a cold - from my sweet husband, thank you very much ;0)... so I'm going to put myself to bed. Take care, my lovelies!


ausxser said...

I've so been enjoying seeing this quilt slowly come're doing a beautiful job!


Miss 376 said...

I love the "feel" of these blocks. Looking forward to seeing them come together

Allison Ann Aller said...

Stitching and favorite combination!
Your block as always is exquisite...and I am waiting for that center bite of toast and butter, too!

You are going to love growing all those veggies. This method seems like a great way to go.

rianammerman said...

I don't know much about stitches, but I do know your piece is absolutely exquisite.

You look like you have your work cut out for you with that lasagna garden. Hope your cold leaves swiftly and doesn't get you down.

Plays with Needles said...

I never heard of this idea for gardening. I'm glad to know about it since there are very few of us who like digging. The palette on these recent blocks is exquisite.

Rissa said...

Love the block. The lasagna garden sounds very interesting. I used to have raised beds for my roses at my old house, but my current home is just too shady for much. :-)

Lynn Douglass said...

I'm a first time visitor, and I enjoyed scrolling through your blog. Love the handwork on the satin!