It's been one of those weeks when the temperature gets up to 30C in the shade but cools down to 15C at night. The tomatoes are loving it, as are the beets and carrots. The peas, lettuce, and spinach on the other hand, have stopped growing. Today we had to pull up spinach that had already bolted, gone to seed.
Luckily, I found a solution. We bought two sheets of shade cloth from Lee Valley in Ottawa and installed them so that they give a very light shade to the entire bed. It is a loose weave of some kind of nylon. THe plants still get plenty of light, and rain can drip through when we get some of those "Pop Up Thunderstorms" they are always predicting on the Weather Network.
PeterC is very proud of "his" potatoes. I must admit they are growing quite well and seem to be tolerating the heat well. Earlier this week he added a few shovels full of soil to surround the young potato plants. This is called mounding and is supposed to give the developing tubers a place to grow completely out of the sun. Some sources suggest this will let the potato plant produce more. We shall see.
It's been so hot, so early this year that we decided a small pool would do wonders for those hot humid days when we can't get up enough energy to care, much less do any real work. Swimming used to be an option down at the river but the number of boats, seadoos, and fishermen have made it impossible to swim there any longer.
Unfortunately, we have discovered that squirrels and swimming pools do not mix. Our little Lost Soul has still been hanging around the yard, though not as bold and tame as he once was. At some point yesterday, after PeterC came inside after starting the pool filling up, Lost Soul either got curious or slipped off his high wire highway while over the pool and went for a swim.
When PeterC went out to check on the progress he found a very wet and very tired squirrel swimming circles around the outside edge of the pool. Either the poor thing was out of his mind or something told him he could get help from the human staring at him with a rather dumbfounded look on his face. Either way the squirrel swam straight to where PeterC was standing. PeterC quickly grabbed a nearby flower basket and gently scooped the panting furling out of the water.
PeterC tipped the squirrel onto the ground where he lay panting for few minutes. Once he was able to move again, he climbed 2 feet up the trunk of the Horse Chestnut and there he stayed for several more minutes. When PeterC took the picture the squirrel moved further up the tree and found a safe crook where he could recover from his adventures. We've purchased a tarp to cover the pool, but I suspect this squirrel will be a little more careful with his footing from now on.