it’s spring

Greetings and salutations everyone; yes, once again it is I, Mani the tiny purebred border collie, filling in for the guy I live with, and here to bring you the latest news from our garden. (I almost wrote my garden …..) You may remember me from such posts as “My New Friend” among at least a few others.

Here I am in a characteristic pose. I’m not really completely still, as you can tell.15032205It turned into spring since the last time I talked to you. I didn’t notice much of anything, really, though the sandy loam appeared on the driveway and it was moved into the back yard, and put on top of the piles of gravel. I had to stay inside while this happened, of course, but it took a lot less time than moving the gravel did. The sandy loam seems to be sand and cow poop, and I think it’s pretty excellent. 15032204Like, for one thing, if I needed to survey things, which of course I do, being so little, the mounds make superior places for doing that. This picture was taken yesterday, when it was all gloomy and overcast for a while. 15032201It’s also my job to tamp down the sandy loam. Loam is kind of a funny word. That part that looks like a trench is what the guy I live with calls an “access path”. I haven’t used it yet. 15032205There were some crocuses blooming the other day, Friday I think, and I’m supposed to show those. It’ll help make this post seem longer. This is Crocus tommasinianus ‘Barr’s Purple’. You can get this one from a regular bulb place, sometimes. It reseeds, too. barrs



barrs1That’s really all I have for today. Yesterday evening the guy I live with took a picture of the new moon, and so I’ll leave you with that.15032203


Until next time, then.


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20 Responses to it’s spring

  1. Gorgeous crocus pictures. And the moon picture is pretty nice too. I notice your left ear is starting to stand up, Mani. Looks like you are doing an excellent job of tamping down the sandy loam as you survey your domain.

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks; the guy I live with wonders about my ears. I assure them they will be excellent, no matter what. People sometimes wonder about the piles of dirt in the back yard, or, as we like to call them, raised beds, well, if you tried to dig in the soil in the half of the back yard closest to the house, nothing would happen. The guy I live with says it’s like trying to dig in frozen ice cream. I’ve never had ice cream but I like the sound of it. When the neighborhood was built, the native soil was removed, and this icky stuff was spread on top, about a foot deep (more in some places). A few things will grow in it, like buffalo grass, but not much else. That’s why there’s sandy loam. It’s really soft.

      • Mark Mazer says:

        Hi Mani. Fred the giant schnauzer puppy here. You are one lucky pup as your ears can stand without the fuss that the guy I live with has to go through. He has to fasten these tampon things to the ears and tape them in place. Hopefully this will only take a few weeks. My other roomie, Zack the elder, a rescue giant, has natural ears but gets ear infections several times a year. Went for a walk yesterday and I got to snack on delicious narcissus but the arum leaves were nasty. I had my eye on the Ipheion but they don’t smell so good. Critters ate all the crocus years ago

      • paridevita says:

        I haven’t been on any walks yet because I don’t know what the leash is for, besides something that needs attacking. I keep hearing about an upcoming plant sale, and I can hardly wait to play the Planting Game again.

  2. In the early 1900s, to plant trees into the mesa hardpan of Balboa Park, dynamite was used to create tree-planting holes. A teenager who came out to work on park grounds – and who later served as head of Torrey Pines State Park – remembered early-morning hotel bed wakeups from loud explosive blasts just up the street.
    From what I know of doggies pure bred or otherwise, loud explosive blasts are not favorite sounds. Be grateful, Mani, The Guy has chosen raised beds. Have you heard him speak of what the native soil was like before removal?
    Love all photographs tonight, the making longer ones of purple crocus and especially the crescent-in-moon-belly shot. Really nice ones of you, Mani, on survey in the garden. And, oh, your almost heartbreaking close-ups with your old soul eyes alight with young excitement!

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks; the guy I live with says you (meaning he) can dig down a bit and find the native soil, creek bottom loam over decomposed sandstone. That’s the soil out in the “way back”, because the yard slopes away from the house, down to the creek. (I haven’t seen the creek yet because I don’t understand what the harness and leash are for.) I hear, though, that in the front yard, the soil was scraped away a few inches, then watered, then scarped away and hour later, and that’s how holes were dug. Until gypsum was discovered, and that was dug into the whole front yard. They say you’re not supposed to use it here, some calcium thing or other, so the guy I live with figured that’s what he should use, and did. But the back yard, with a quarter century of border collie paws compacting the soil as they raced out to the way back to look at stuff in the field. And, in arid or semi-arid regions, evaporation exceeds percolation in heavy clay soils (he says), so the ground almost never gets saturated, and stuff dries out. Thus the raised beds.

  3. Re says:

    Hi Mani, loved the post, the purple patch, and the moon, Mars, and the Venus as well. Though the garden still looks unkept. Have an adventurous week.

  4. So Sandy Loam wasn’t a person after all. Were you disappointed? I’m sure you’ll get the hang of this gardening thing soon.

    • paridevita says:

      It wasn’t a person, and it turned out the be much more fun. Very soft to lie on. The guy I live with says things will be planted there, eventually. That must mean the Planting Game. You should see him try to catch me when I play the Planting Game. He yells things like “Ptuh” which I think means to spit out whatever I’m running away with. I sometimes do.

      • Mani – when you get fed up with the planting game, do you play the digging up game?

      • paridevita says:

        Well, the Planting Game goes like this. He plants, I pull up the plants. And then run away with them, rather triumphantly. (Turns out that was he was one, or zero, he followed his great uncle around the garden pulling up everything that had just been planted, so, irony, huh.)

  5. vivianswift says:

    O, Mani padme — that middle picture of pure bred border collie surveyage atop the sandy loam made me look twice. It looks just like Chess, sitting there, and his buddy Slipper, and Flurry…a long line of bodhisatvas have kept watch on that garden and the guy you live with. And now you.

    • paridevita says:

      Yes, and now me. I read through the blog, while the guy I live with wasn’t looking, and realize that there are pretty high standards here, but I don’t see much of any problem. I’ll just be me, and see what happens. We are all kind of alike, and yet different, if you know what I mean.

  6. Cris says:

    I heard that chant by you on the mound of sandy loom….I’m the king of the back yard!!!
    May I rule a long time!! :)) loved the color of those crocus …and that moon shot

  7. Barb K says:

    You know, I don’t think of Border Collies as gigantic dogs, but your paws are really huge. Does that serve a purpose in the herding world? Do you use your snout to issue directives the way my 1/2 heelers do? Like you, they also loved to sit atop and sometimes excavate a giant pile of what the local yard laughably calls compost. In the past my 1/2 Border Collie liked to go through and dig up bulbs I had just planted. Do you have a better plan for the garden too?

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks; I agree that my paws are huge, and so we know who’s going to rule the house and garden here. Actually I’m probably not going to be an enormous border collie, just a regular sized one, but I like to think I’m going to be huge. Like nine feet tall or something. But being little has its advantages too.

  8. Marieke says:

    Hi Mani! I have not visited here for a while, and would first like to offer my sincerest condolences to the guy who lives with you. That said, I am so happy that you have graced him with your presence. One of the most unselfish ways to transform the grief over losing one’s dog (or any pet) is to open one’s home and heart to another dog and the guy did right by welcoming you into his home. You, dear Mani, are the perfect new companion for the guy – one who keeps him busy cleaning up after you while keeping a smile on his face. By the way – you are a very cute purebred border collie – one of the cutest I have ever seen. In addition, your name is part of the Bhuddist mantra “Om Mani Padme Hum” and is very special. That said, try not to let it all go to your head. You have some very big paw prints to fill, but from what I can tell from your daily antics, you are doing just fine.

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks; I guess I would have to agree that I’m pretty cute. I went to get stuck with needles today and I was so ultra angelic that everyone remarked on how cute I was.
      I like it pretty well here, I think.

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