Friday, March 30, 2012

Getting Everything in Order in the New Place

The many times we looked at our Moca house before purchasing it it must have been raining or cloudy or something because we did not remember the views. Besides the views, its location on the top of a ridge gives us sunrises, sunsets and rainbows galore since there are valleys east and west of us. It is going to be an awesome storm-watching house as well. So here's another rainbow - look at the base of the rainbow at the row of enormous royal palms to get a sense of scale!

One thing I hope to do better at this house is vegetable gardening. Since we are on top of a ridge instead of down the hillside we don't have a sometimes river that sweeps things away. There is also great drainage (but more rocks). When we moved in (xmas eve) it took a few weeks before I decided to at least start some greens in a pot. Here's the pot now - bushy with some spicy greens!
I planted some zucchini later on in a cement mixing tray.  I have been watching the mini zucchinis form and after the latest 2 inches of rain went out and holy cow their size exploded! Looks like zucchini does well here!
I decided to turn a dog run into a garden area since it is contained already with fencing for climbing stuff and poles that will make it easy to cover with shade cloth at some point. Until then I decided to try gutter gardening. I took one section of vinyl gutter with end caps, drilled holes in the bottom, lined it with screen, filled it with potting soil and planted mixed greens. They are already coming up. They didn't float away in the rain. They didn't get pounded or eaten by birds (or chickens) either. So far so good! Since an S hook hangs it on the fence I can make may tiers of gutter veggies!

Here's the first zucchini. I let it get away from me so it is horse-sized but will still taste great on the BBQ! I found some food covers which will be handy once the deck cover is built (soon!) and we want to have bug free food out. I really just liked the ant on it!

No post is complete without the cat kids. Princess and Bepo have not returned and probably at this point won't. The others are adjusting well and coming in and out of the house. Blanco has even be caught sleeping on the swingy bench at night but he only sprints in and out and prefers meals in the downstairs room. Chicken is adorable and adjusted.

Little Jackie loves Rip (literally - she is getting spayed Tuesday) and plays with Chicken well. Tuca doesn't like her but you know how women are...Yah, look at Rip all full of himself! He is actually getting nice again and hanging around. We think he got beaten up (he was sore and wobbly and had a visit to the vet to get re hydrated) and now wants to hang close. Plus he likes Jackie even though she only wants to play now and isn't in heat any more.

Blanco is the most gorgeous and soft cat in the universe! Pollo has gotten much friendlier and now sleeps with us on the bed. Tuca and Dakota are doing their normal routines. Dakota has dementia and is just getting plain bizarre.
I heard a new bird in the yard and went out and saw this Troupial. Very exciting! It must be nesting nearby since I hear it in the early morning and at sunset. I think there are only one or two and they go from the Flambouyant to the tree in front to the mango and then on the edges of the forest. They are hard to photograph. In the yard I continue to dig up perfectly good lawn in my quest to make a park-like landscape. When I was at the Mayaguez Mall they had plant and food vendors and I found a She Kong Heliconia and this cool rattlesnake Calathea. I am very excited to get them planted. 
The front was pretty boring (lawn and wall) and I have started to tackle it getting the fish tail and bottle palms started. I will dig the "islands" bigger as I add plants and then want some water dishes, rocks, edging, pea gravel and more plants. Ideally I do not want lawn at all and I don't want to see the ground.
I may plant this hibiscus near the wall. I debated about whether or not to line things up like croton or mirto but in the end I think there is enough symmetry with the palms and it can end there.
I got a new camera which is wonderful except that the raw files are NEFS which means my version of photoshop doesn't read them. I am basically illiterate when it comes to computer stuff and this is a huge setback since I know my current "work flow" and don't want to have to learn another one. Here's the moon and then the moon over San Sebastian!


Mike said...

Have you tried downloading the latest ACR from the Adobe website? ACR is updated periodically to support new cameras

Fran and Steve said...

Looks like this is becoming your dream house. Nice. I saw Cats 101 last night and I think Rip is a (mostly) Snowshoe. He's adorable.