a few hours of gardening in my parents' backyard was how i spent this sunny and pleasant saturday.
where the lotus barrel is now, behind the garage, it takes about 11:30am before it gets any sun, and lasts until 4:30pm or so. is it getting enough sunshine? none of that will matter since we're planning on relocating it to a spot between raised beds 2 and 3, directly facing south where it can get the maximum amount of daylight. the coin leaves are still closed, but the lotus with the longer stem was finally beginning to open up its leaf, slowly unfurling. hopefully by tomorrow it will be completely open.
i discovered the SZ40 is actually good for macro insect photography, and even better for insect videos. with a lot of flowers out, we got plenty of flying visitors. honeybees were particularly attracted to the scallion flower balls. i also saw some other bees, including metallic green sweat bees, mason bees, carpenter bees, and bumble bees. twice i saved bumblebees drowning in the lotus barrel.
my father and i moved the 8ft long rectangular planting boxes into the backyard. originally they were to sit on either east-west sides of the sunroom, but we figured out they could go on the southern side (on the area where we just added wood mulch this spring) and there'd still be enough room to walk behind the raised beds. we didn't fill them with soil yet because 1) the planters needed to be leveled first (they're elevated on concrete cinder blocks), and 2) additional drainage holes have to made (currently there's just 2).
we also moved the two large potted raspberries to the western side of the sunroom, by the basement entrance. this is actually a much better place for these raspberries since we noticed the leaves on the side facing the house (instead of facing south) were stunted. moving them to a more open spot will give them better sun exposure.
elsewhere in the garden: i noticed no difference in the iron treated jasmines, the leaves still show signs of chlorosis. we moved them to a sunny location, hopefully the light will induce the leaves to turn green. i noticed this last week, but the morning glory and moon flower seeds have germinated along the southern wall. they will grow slowly because the fence blocks the light, but once they crawl up the trellis they will get the sunshine they need. a few dahlias have also sprouted, i put plastic collars around them to protect them from possible critters.
white sugar snap pea flowers have formed, but the weather is getting warmer, and peas like it colder, so we'll see how many peas we can get. there are also fragrant peas but they seem stunted. a few hyacinth beans hide within their midst as well. cucumber seedlings have also sprouted, as well as bottle gourds. the potted gardenia has completely defoliated but remarkably tiny leaves are starting to reemerge from the bare branches. with a sharp alcohol-sanitized knife i pruned off some lower branches on the tomato and pepper plants. my father spotted a stray bamboo shoot and we quickly dug it up. finally, i spotted some bird droppings on our solar panels so i climbed a ladder with the garden hose and washed them off.
the large rabbit came back to our backyard again. i chased it to the western side of the house, watching to see where it came in, but i managed to trap it in the eastern corner of the western fence (the one covered in honeysuckle). it then ran to the other corner (where the raspberries are) and i lost it, either it found a way out, or ran by me when i wasn't looking (back in the backyard). a single rabbit could easily decimate our vegetable garden by inadvertently nibbling on the tender seedlings. hopefully i scared it off and it won't come back, but i know that's just wishful thinking, as rabbits are stupid, and will find some way to return despite the danger.
we did it: we made 52.84kWh of electricity today, which put us at 657kWh so far for the month of june 2019, beating the total production of 656kWh for the entire month of february 2019. all of this accomplished in just 15 days, with 16 more to go this month, so who knows how much we'll finally make. all of last year, the most number of 50kWh+ production days in a single month was 4 (june and july); compare that to this month, where we already had 6 50kWh+ days. all thanks to the new 10kW inverter, june is the first full month where we have it in action with zero clipping.
after i returned home, i went back outside, this time biking to market basket to get some garlic plantain chips and häagen-dazs ice cream, this being the last night of the sale. the häagen-dazs section was almost cleared out, just a dozen cartons left. i left with some green tea and bourbon vanilla bean truffle.
annie was already home when i got back to cambridge, i could see the light from her bedroom window when i rode past the house to a parking spot on a private road. i chatted with her later, found out when i saw her this morning leaving the house at 10am all covered up so she wouldn't get a tan, that she was actually going to the harvard library to study. unfortunately the library didn't open until 12pm, so she hung out at the smith campus center until the library opened.