after returning home, i went through my usual morning routine of bathroom-shower-matcha latte. it was warm enough that i thought about making a cold latte instead of a hot one, but i wasn't sure if the powder would dissolve in cold milk, so i settled for a hot latte.
my father had dropped off the used u-posts and fencing earlier in my alleyway. around 11:30am i walked down to the community garden to install them. it was going to be a quick trip, but i bumped into david and we got to talking about gardening. he actually grew some bittermelons last summer, but he only harvested a few measly melons, as they were outcompeted by the cucumbers. after he left, i installed my trellises. the fencing is only 3ft tall, so my climbing bittermelons and hyacinth beans won't have too much to climb. maybe if they do well, next year i'll install taller climbing fences. i used a brick to hammer in the u-posts. all of them went into the soil except the one near the monkshood. i tried digging out the obstruction, but the rock/root was too far down, so eventually i gave up, shoved some large stones against the post to keep it anchored.
i didn't get back home until 12:40pm, already a bit of a sweaty mess as it was a hot day. i watched as cambridge landscape returned to my neighbors' driveway to remove the tree stump with a grinder. what was cool about it was the grinder vehicle was operated by a remote control, and it had tank treads. i didn't rest too long, i was out again by 1:30pm, this time riding the motorcycle to belmont to spray the flowering cherry plum with neem oil.
i arrived in belmont by 1:45pm and ended up staying 2 hours, even though originally i planned for just a quick visit. i made a quarter gallon solution of neem oil, which wasn't enough, and i ran out before i could thorough drench the tree, so i had to run inside and grab the hand spray bottle of neem oil to do some touchups. i also wrapped a few layers of duct tape (sticky side facing outwards) when i realized there were ants climbing on the tree. though i can't quite be sure, ants have been known to farm aphids, so by preventing them from climbing the tree, the aphids will lose their protection and hopefully in a few weeks predaceous bugs will take care of the ones i missed with the spray. the cherry plum was much better today, after i sprayed it with insecticidal soap yesterday. there were definitely fewer aphids, at least most of the large black ones were gone. most of the ones i saw today were the bright green kinds, young aphids. i also sprayed the two nearby lupines which had a few powdery white aphids. i know there are many varieties of aphids but i don't have time to learn how to identify them. and aphid is an aphid and they must be eradicated.
afterwards i planted some seeds: some cupcake cosmos near the grape trellis, some nigella seeds mixed in with the nigella seedlings, and chinese asters by the southern chrysanthemum and the behind-the-garage perennial bed. we haven't seen rabbits in the backyard for weeks, not since i spotted the bunny. i think our perimeter is secure against the larger mammals. i'm just waiting for the woodchuck to make its appearance. my hope is where ever it was hibernating during the winter, that some neighbor finally discovered it and managed to relocate the woodchuck. last year we didn't see signs of woodchuck until early june, and i even managed to chase a live one around the backyard in august.
next i watered the plants. my father was telling me not to water too much because our rain water supply is less than half now according to the gauge and there's no forecast of extended rain the rest of the month. he watered this morning but used a water can, which only let out a trickle of water. i was so conservative with my watering, although watering in the afternoon is a waste since the water evaporates faster.
finally, when all the gardening work was done, i flew the drone for a little bit. i was flying it above the oakley country club before i experienced my first freeze. from then on out it was just a series of trying to regain control of my phone to navigate the drone back home. i had plenty of battery life so i wasn't worried, but it was definitely annoying.
i drank some suanmeitang before i finally left. instead of going home, i decided to stop by the cafe first. my father asked me to rewire the nest thermostat for cooling. my godmother asked my help to sync up her fitbit charge 3 to her samsung phone. even though the fitbit app was no longer on her phone, she must've created an account in the past because her phone still remembered her username and password. when i tried to sync it via bluetooth, it took a long time, and i couldn't tell if it sync'ed or not. another thing was i couldn't consistently activate the screen no matter how much i swiped or tapped on the screen. i finally told my godmother to ask jack to set it up again for her because i couldn't figure it out. the problem is i've never used a fitbit before, and her phone was set up in chinese language, and even after i switched to english, i still couldn't get it to work.
i also went to the former florist shop, where my father wanted me to disassemble some furniture so they can sand the wooden floors. there wasn't enough time to do it today, but i just wanted to see what was required so i can be ready when i do come back later this week.
i left by 5pm. it was already too late to return to the community garden to plant my seedlings, i'll do that tomorrow. it was also too late to do any grocery shopping at market basket. besides, i wasn't sure what i was going to make anyway. instead for dinner i heated up a brick of frozen lasagna.
i watched the play-in tournament game between the 7-seed celtics and the 8-seed washington wizards. winner of this game advances into the playoffs to face the 2-seed brooklyn nets, while the loser plays the winner of the 9-seed vs 10-seed matchup to see who will get the 8-seed spot, with their 1-seed opponent waiting for them in the playoffs. it's pretty complicated. anyway, when i first watched the game, the celtics were done, but when i watched it again, they were up by a large margin. tatum and walker were firing on all cylinders, which was what we needed to beat the wizards. now the question is can the beat the nets, when their record is 0-3 versus brooklyn. it's almost like if they can just get one win that'll be a victory, since nobody expects them to realistically defeat the nets. tonight's game gives me a tiny bit of hope though.