I Trapped Another Rat In The Same Place

I trapped another rat in the same place as the last one. It was the same size too, and I’m wondering if I got two adults or two adolescents. I guess I’ll find out by resetting the trap and waiting. I also decided to use up the remaining straw because I won’t need more mulch until July. The springtime will see me pulling back the straw from the hills so the soil can warm. The fresh straw brightens up the garden and insulates the ground so the decomposing process can continue. It adds contrast to my “work of art” and encourages me to find other methods to decorate. I’ve started clearing out the areas around the big rocks because the rocks are significant focus points now that the majority of the plantings are gone. The gardens bones are visible now and we make the most with what we’ve got. The barren mounds actually look good. You see potential and are on hold for awhile. No need to do anything so you can find the peacefulness that Winter bestows.

Before I even got into the dreary winter gardening spirit I began finding signs of spring. They aren’t really signs of spring, because they occur every November, but they remind me of spring because they show the new beginnings of life. The buckbrush has tiny pink buds forming on the tips of the branches. You have to look close to see them. The red manzanita buds are hanging down on stems like little dangling earrings. Buttercup leaves are abundant, and will provide us with the first flowers of spring. Bright yellow is so welcome after months of gray. The chard, spinach, lettuce, kale and artichokes in the garden are all still crisp and perky. They went through some really cold nights and are still pleasing to the eye. The lettuce and spinach got covered at night and I’ve now got hopes of their overwintering.

It’s time for a walkabout. Gathering Christmas decorations begins in the garden, with some bright red Nandina berries for the wreath, because we don’t have Holly berries. Cedar branches are my preferred wreath material, but fir and pine work well also. Tiny fir cones are delicate and light so they attach to the wreath better than pine cones. Pine cones look good on a place mat with candles. Mistletoe can be harvested from oak trees. Send your “rug rats” up, they love to climb :). A bit of straw for the Nativity scene will help keep your cats entertained. A yule log for the hearth can be any type of wood you want, but you’ll enjoy the smell of cedar :).

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