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It's hailing. Right now. Pearl size, but lots of 'em, coming straight down. They bounce. Making quite a noise on our metal roof.
All you need to create this rustic, oh-so-Napa Valley chandelier is a friend who's about to rip out an old vineyard. A clever do-it-yourselfer rescued these two cordon-trained Sauvignon Blanc vines (left) from the bulldozer just in time last fall. (Stuffing them into her Prius for the ride home was video-worthy.) Now suspended as if growing from the ceiling in a wide X pattern and sporting LED mini lights, the vines make an eye-catching visual to enhance her dining room.
Another imaginative use for old cordon trained vines: a two-dimensional Christmas tree for narrow spaces. They also look dramatic propped up against a fence (right).
Mother Nature willing, it will be many years until Villa Ragazzi is due for its next replant. If interested you should be scouting for old vineyards, and asking for the opportunity to recycle a few vines before they're uprooted.
You're looking at 17 linear feet of freshly harvested lemons. They represent only one-third of the total picked this winter from my two "dwarf" trees. I have the puncture wounds to prove it. Those 2" thorns are much more dangerous than roses.
Next: quarts of preserved lemons (in salt), a very useful culinary staple; gallons of juice for the freezer; maybe a little lush lemon curd as a reward; gift deliveries for lemon-less friends; a severe pruning for the trees to control the next crop (blossoms are already forming). Any other ideas, bring 'em on!
Given this bonanza, I must conclude that lemons are related to zucchini. Home gardeners, beware.
The answer: nearly 7 bushels.
There was a mad rush yesterday to finish burning the vineyard debris and plow in the soil amendments before the Big Rain started this morning. We're told to expect 9" in the next 3-4 days. Hooray!
The backhoe? that's the vineyard equivalent of a fireplace poker.
I am Villa Ragazzi's default blogger and wielder of the blue pencil.