Posts Tagged With: plums


I noticed huge water bills when I returned home and found a spongy bog out near the orchard. Couldn’t find the leak.

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Hired a guy to dig up the pipe. He dug two feet deep in a three-foot cross section where the pipe should have been.

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He finally made a witching wand out of coat hangers. It was very close. Two hours later, I have no leak. Yay!

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Meanwhile, I spent most of the day and the day before putting up from left to right, plum sauce apple plum sauce, apple sauce, in quarts and pints. I don’t buy jars and lids, I recycle and save jars and lids. (Only useable for fruits and tomatoes. No meats or non acid veggies.)  I froze 8 quarts of apples and plums for a rainy day. It was a long day

Then, this morning, I researched George Soros after getting a challenge from reader Papa, about my blog on Leadership vs. Blackmail. If you’d like to see my answer, you can look at my blog of two days ago. I would like to reiterate that most of my friends are Republicans, they just aren’t the EXTREME type I’ve been so critical of.

Then, being technically challenged, I love getting Gizmag in my email. What a fantastic adventure it is to see what innovative people from all over the world are doing to make this world more fascinating or worse, for all I know. Have a look at this link:

While there, you might click on NSF Wallet, geekie inventions of all sorts for sale to people with deep pockets. I loved the $300 toothbrush.  Fun, fun, fun.

I’m having a friend stopping by for lunch. He is limited to when his driver can bring him to visit, and today is the day. And, I had to miss Jim’s friends from Washington because I left the motor home and flew home early. Bummer.

It is just the way it is.  Hi Ted, Larry, Carrie, Debbie and gang, Jim and Joan. Next year for sure. Where is Shawn?

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I actually got through my mail yesterday and have two small grocery bags full of paper to recycle. Opening the mail isn’t the end of it. There is always a number of things from the mail to attend to.

In the late afternoon, I managed to pick the plums left on one tree. The green gage plum tree awaits me today. The little satsumas were not as tasty as usual, maybe because of unseasonal rains. Probably a benefit of climate change to have such a bumper crop of apples, peaches, plums and pears.

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Karen, my house mate,  gave bags and boxes of plums to neighbors, made jam, brought some down to the senior center, and still the tree had plums, high in the top. I picked these three containers full and shook the rest down for the deer.

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Everyone enjoyed the big Elberta peaches, and Bartlett pears, but the wild Indian peaches were prolific. Karen couldn’t find takers for them,  though she made jam and gave to anybody who would have them.  (You have to peel Indian peaches.)

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There are still some peaches left high in the tree. You can see the huge bird peck in one of them. I might be able to pick what’s left here and on the other side of the tree.

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One box of apples remained of those I picked before I left. They are looking spotty but they have kept their firmness stored in newspaper on the cold garage floor.  There are still a few apples on two of my trees.  My job today is to make apple-plum sauce. Maybe a plum-peach sauce batch. Sauce preserves easily and freezes well, too. I have limited time so a bit each day should get it done. All my fruit is organic.

Now that I’m home, I get the news and it is never good news. The longer I am with Jim, the more I understand his philosophy of  “I don’t read the news. It is all bad and I can’t do anything about it anyway.” 

I guess it isn’t in my personality to not have hope, or not to recycle, or not to look to the sun for energy, etc. and I always will do my part to reduce human impact. In fact, I’m writing a book about it.

I took this condensed report directly from Mother Jones Magazine. The report was just published by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s “Summary for Policymakers” of its Fifth Assessment Report—

Looks like we are in deep doo doo for the next 1,000 years. Humans denied involvement or didn’t know what we were doing to the planet for about 100 years.

Mother Jones calls this the “Cliffs Notes version”, providing the highlights of the text in a  more readable fashion. They admit the report is SCARY:

1. Global warming is just plain unmistakable. At the top of the report, the warming of the climate system that we are seeing (in the form of melting ice, temperature rise, and sea level rise, among other factors) is called “unequivocal” and “unprecedented over decades to millennia.” Not mincing words here, then.

2. Scientists are more sure than ever that humans are driving global warming. The certainty about this central conclusion has now been upped to 95 percent. Let’s allow the scientists to say it in their own words: “It is extremely likely that human influence has been the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century.”

3. Atmospheric carbon dioxide is higher than it has been in nearly a million years. How much have humans changed the planet? Well, the IPCC says our atmosphere has more carbon dioxide, more methane, and more nitrous oxide than it has had in “at least the last 800,000” years. And how long did it take us to do that? A 40 percent increase in carbon dioxide has occurred since pre-industrial times—or, roughly in the last 200 years.

Item four is hard to understand, but don’t miss reading #6.

4. A clarification on the alleged “slowdown.” The IPCC has added considerable clarification to the most controversial part of the report, where it notes that the rate of surface temperature increase over the last 15 years ago is somewhat less than it had been previously. After an earlier draft of the report leaked in August, this section was widely cited by climate skeptics to cast doubt on global warming. Now, the IPCC clarifies that short-term trends of this kind “are very sensitive to the beginning and end dates and do not in general reflect long-term climate trends.” The report says the recent reduction in the rate of warming is caused, in roughly equal parts, by natural climate variability (possibly including heat going deeper into the oceans) and a temporary decline of solar radiation reaching the planet, thanks to volcanic eruptions and the solar cycle itself. (For more detail, see our live blog.)

5. Projections of sea level rise have increased. Last time around, in 2007, the IPCC was faulted for having projections of future sea level rise that were arguably too conservative, because of the way they dealt with possible contributions from the melting of land-based ice (e.g., Greenland, West Antarctica). This time, the projections are higher for the end of this century. The highest end projection indicates oceans could rise by more than 3 feet (or 0.98 meters).

6. Much of global warming is irreversible and will continue for centuries. In the most somber part of the report, the IPCC provides a truly geological perspective on the changes that we are causing. It notes that much of what we are doing to the planet is “irreversible on a multi-century to millennial time scale” and that temperatures will remain “at elevated levels for many centuries,” even if we completely stop emitting carbon dioxide. Indeed, the report states, much of the carbon dioxide that we’ve emitted “will remain in the atmosphere longer than 1,000 years.”

I read where we’ve had the biggest chinook salmon run in 20 years and no one knows why?  Did it ever occur to anyone that salmon predators are in trouble?  Or that beef raising countries fished 40 billion pounds of anchovies out of the ocean to use for fertilizer. Shouldn’t there be an ocean ecological guard that says you don’t rob the oceans for beef? Capitalism gone amok! Greed the driving force.


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Virginia and the kids came up for the weekend, kind of a last fling at the flume, some blackberry picking, which Doug calls “black pearls”,  and picking peaches out of my much neglected orchard. Some plums were ripe, too.

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I dunked my feet in the water and just kept cool.

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We relaxed…

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Owen brought a book.

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We enjoyed a nice cool watermelon after our cool dunk.

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Back at the house, Owen decided to take a nap with the timer set…on his head while the rest of us tackled the peach tree. Actually, Theo picked while I held the ladder.

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While we got a good volume of peaches, they are small and bird pecked so I only set one strip out to dry. Virginia took the rest of them home to turn into jam, along with a big container of plums.

I practiced my Massachusetts pronunciations so I don’t say things wrong and get shunned.

Worcester: Wuhsta or Wistah,

Gloucester:  Glaw-stah

Leicester: Lestah

Woburn: Woo-ban

Dedham: Dead-um

Tewksbury:  Tooks-berry

Leominster: Lemin-stah

Summerset: Sam-ah-set or Sum-aw-set

never: nevah


There, that ought to do it.

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In self-defense, I got outside just as the sun was peeping over the hill. It was a cool sixty and my yard apples and plums are in rough shape. The trees need pruning and the fruit needs thinning.

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Where the branches are low, I can thin the apples even though they are way past due. The yard worker I used to depend on who knew how to take care of apples moved to South Carolina.

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I have five apple trees in the yard. Those that are high in the tree can only be reached by ladder and I’m not ready to get back on a ladder since I can’t climb  steps without pain. This tree and one other have a trumpet vine decorating it.

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Several years ago, I dug up the trumpet vine because I didn’t want it in my trees and it wouldn’t stay on the fence. Now, I’m grateful it didn’t die.

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The apple crop is going to be plentiful, and the gala and fuji are already near ripe.

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The green gage plum isn’t ripe. The fruit is over-sized and heavy. The deer have eaten the leaves on the straggly branches touching the ground. It hasn’t been pruned in two years and desperately needs it. One branch is growing over the top of my green house and needs a big saw to get the branch down. But, it is fairly easy to thin with a stick.  My intent is to get the job done in increments a bit each early morning before the thermometer hits 90 degrees. I makes me feel good to get out and work in the yard.

I had a chiropractic treatment today, and start with a second office tomorrow that claims to have one of the ten best medical devices for treating skeletal injuries. It was featured on CBS Doctors program. I didn’t see the program but I’ll let you know how it works out.

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