02 July 2007

July: plus ça change...

You'll never guess what the weather is like this morning. It's raining! We just saw a rainbow and then came a sudden downpour. It might have stopped raining for the moment. I see rays of sunlight, but you can't trust the treacherous clouds.

Roses in our garden — there aren't as many
now as there were a month ago.

It rained all day yesterday, off and on. We only got 5 mm, or about 0.2", of moisture, but it rained hard at times, while never for long. It rained lightly for much of the day. It was enough to keep us indoors.

The garden is very green. If you enlarge the picture
by clicking on it, you can see red apples on a tree in the
background, and red cherries on a tree on the right.

You are probably tired of reading about this rainy weather by now. So you can imagine how tired we are of experiencing it.

The rain makes it hard to take Callie out for regular walks, which makes her hyper and antsy. She plays by herself, we try to play with her, and several times a day we make a brief foray out into the garden so that she can pee etc.

Dark clouds gathering over the woods and vines

While our tomato and eggplant plants are growing, they are not producing anything yet. Other plants are doing better. Cherries are amazing this year. All the trees are loaded down with them. Most of them are sour cherries around here.

Wildflowers grow out in the vineyard. The ground looks dry,
but that's because it is very rocky.

We have our own cherry tree out back, behind the garden shed. In the four previous years, we have had practically no cherries from it. And the ones we did have were all pit and almost no flesh.

This year, it is loaded with small but fairly plump cherries. I picked enough to fill a big basket on Saturday because I thought they were good to eat. Walt didn't like them, though — he thought they were bitter. So I made jam out of them yesterday.

Red apples on a tree in our garden

We also have loads of apples on our own trees, and I think we are going to have loads of blackberries on all the land surrounding us. Blackberries here don't grow so vigorously as they did where I grew up in North Carolina or where a good friend lives up the the Sierra foothills of California. They don't seem to invade all the land or take over other plants.

Blackberry blossoms and thorns

But this year the blackberry brambles seem to be full of blossoms. If the weather turns warm, as predictions indicate that it will this week, all the blossoms will turn into berries.

Grapes in bunches in the Renaudie winery's vineyard

As for the vineyard, grapes are coming right along. In the Renaudie winery's vineyard out back, there are Cabernet Franc, Sauvignon Blanc, Chenin Blanc, Gamay, Malbec (called Côt here), and Pineau d'Aunis grapes.

These grapes look like they are starting to turn red.

I can't tell the difference between any of them except in the broad categories of white and red, as in the wines they produce. And I can't tell that until the grapes actually start to turn color. They are all green at the beginning.

Our house from out by the pond

Yesterday I cooked fresh spinach and fresh mushrooms. We thawed out a container of tomato sauce that we had made last fall. Walt sliced up some mozzarella and made dough for a pizza crust. Instead of pizzas, he made two calzones. That was a good way to spend a rainy Sunday.

1 comment:

  1. Yes, the temps is maussade, isn't it?
    The same, over here. I'm leaving for Normandy on Friday, but am afraid it'll even be worse there.


What's on your mind? Qu'avez-vous à me dire ?