Thank defenders of our freedom on Veteran’s Day
November 5, 2007
Today is Veterans’ Day – a special day set aside to remember all those defenders of our freedom and our many fallen heroes. Remember, “the nation which forgets its defenders will itself be forgotten.” Thank a vet today.
Don’t burn the fence
Last week it took us half a day just to put one section of our very large garden to sleep for the winter. It’s funny how one small cutting off a hop vine could now completely cover more than 50 feet of fence line. It was about 10 years ago that my sister Bonnie and I were touring the Olympia Brewery in Washington state. Hops were growing everywhere and I broke off a 6-inch piece of the beautiful dark green vine. I did it for my husband since he liked to make homebrewed beer, so why not grow the hops to go in it?
I carefully tended to the little cutting by keeping it in a cup of water on the long drive back home. After a very short time it began to sprout roots in the cup of water. I planted it next to our garden fence so there would be a support for the vines to grow on and did they ever grow fast! Within a year or so flowers called bracts began to appear on the vines so we picked them and put them in the next batch of homebrewed beer. Umm, delicious – and the vines looked beautiful growing on the fence.
Hops are very easy to grow here in Northern Nevada. They’re classed as perennials and they are closely related to hemp. The problem is they are a pain in the neck (and back) when fall arrives. That’s when we clean up the yard and remove all of the dead hop vines from the fence. The poor fence is smothered by the heavy load! It takes a long time to do this so I thought of a faster way to get rid of the dead twining hop vines: burn them off the fence. My husband reminded me that that would be totally against the East Fork Fire District’s open burning permit. You cannot burn standing grass and weeds. That would include our hops. So we cleaned up the old fashioned way and cut and pulled all those dead vines off the long fence. It was exhausting.
Our just reward came when we got in the hot tub and drank a glass of some homebrewed beer. My back no longer aches.
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My thanks to Judy DeRyke for educating me better about the horned toads’ soft horns and, she’s right, I have never held one in my hand but those spines sure do look sharp to me. I’m also interested in the crested geckos that she has. I’m wondering if they’re similar to the geckos that frequented our house when we lived in Agana, Guam. They had short flat bodies that were covered with tiny scales and their heads were flattened and their tails were thick. They also had soft pads on their feet and could cling to smooth surfaces. It seemed every time that I got in the shower a gecko jumped off the wall and landed on my wet and naked body! That’s one memory I’d like to forget.
— Linda Monohan may be reached at 782-5802.