19 April 2010

Warm days

Maybe it's the volcano in Iceland that's heating up the atmosphere. The winds pushing that cloud of volcanic ash toward France seem also to be bringing us warm weather. It felt almost hot yesterday afternoon when we were sitting out back in the bright sunshine. I suppose it's just the season.

Work in the attic starts up again today. There's still some plaster board to be put up on the south-facing wall and in the dormer over the kitchen. I have to check to see if the flooring has been ordered, and make sure they ordered the style we wanted — chamfered planks 6 inches wide, tongue & groove. I'm pretty sure they won't be putting the finish flooring this week. But maybe the roof windows will go in today.

Looking down from the attic toward the entryway, two floors below

All the fruit trees around the hamlet are in flower now. Plums, cherries, apricots, peaches, quinces and more will be abundant unless the weather turns cold or too rainy. In the strips of land north of our property, where a couple of plum trees blew down in our late-February wind storm, some men with a tractor came on Saturday and set the trees upright again. They propped them up with big wooden posts. The question is, will they blow down again in the next big wind?

Springtime blossoms at la Renaudière

We don't have a tractor to use to set our fallen plum trees upright again, so we'll cut them up for firewood — after we see whether we can get one last crop of plums. Then we'll set a new tree or two out in their place. I planted some apricot pits in a pot a few months ago, and at least one of them has come up strong and healthy. It'll be a good candidate to replace a fallen plum tree.

Looking out a window into the vineyard

I also planted some plum pits a couple of years ago. As a result, I have two new plum trees that are looking strong and healthy. They have already flowered this spring, and in a month or two they might produce a crop of nice little red plums, which are good for pies and jams. So life goes on. Un clou chasse l'autre, as they say in French — a new nail pushes out the old one.


  1. The work on your attic seems to be coming along at a fair old pace. How exciting.

    The blossom photos are lovely. It is grey and raining here today, cold too, after the weekend which was sunny and warm. Still, it is better that way round and we do need the rain - the ground is quite dry.

  2. I don't think I've ever seen an apricot tree. I like your idea of planting new trees where the old ones were.

    That's quite a view from the top of your new room!

  3. Jean, it's been gorgeous here for a couple of days now. This evening, it looks like rain but is still very warm. Showers are predicted.

    Evelyn, I planted pits from two kinds of apricots: one kind I bought at the supermarket (they were really good), and another kind from apricots that grow on a neighbor's property. I don't know which kind has come up. But I'm optimistic that we'll get a good abricotier, whichever. In California, friends of ours had apricot trees and made jam, which they shared each year. It was amazingly good.


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