Posted by: kdeversblog | February 21, 2015

Garden Love

image image image image

Winter seems to have forgotten to come to Portland so spring is on its way. The trees are budding and blooming and the early flowers are raising their pretty faces to the sun. And we are having lots of sun! I couldn’t resist planting some pansies, snap dragons, and primroses.

it is so nice to be outside and working in the soil!

Posted by: kdeversblog | August 11, 2014

Karen Devers Art Studio on Etsy

White scout tank top

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Etsy site is now open for business!

Here’s the link:

https://www.etsy.com/shop/KarenDeversArtStudio?ref=hdr_shop_menu

Fran  modeled my new flowy racer-back tank tops for women and she and Josh both modeled the unisex T shirts. They took the photos as well. I’m so glad to have my Etsy site fully “stocked” and ready for everyone to see it. It’s a lot of work to get all the products (60 individual items) on the site with descriptions and all the other necessary info.

Orange Jumper tank topThe tank tops are in two different styles, Scout and Jumper. Both of them come in white, gray, taupe, green, and orange.I love to wear them because the fabric is very soft and comfy. I wore one over a black T shirt and that looked great as well.

Taupe Jumper

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gray Jumper Green Scout

 

Fran wore one of her Frawn necklaces when we shot photos of the white tank and it looks so great. I want to get more photos of her wearing her jewelry and the tanks. Her necklaces and earrings are a perfect fit for the style of the top.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dark salmon

 

Dark grey

 

Josh and Fran both modeled the unisex T shirts and it was so much fun to see the different colors on them. They both have good summer tans so everything looked great but Fran and I especially liked the dark salmon color on Josh. He liked the dark gray color that had a bit of texture, same as the salmon shirt.

 

 

 

 

 

Light grey

 

 

Taupe front

I thought the neutral colors looked really good also. Fran modeled the light gray and tan and Josh modeled the taupe.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The images on the shirts are restored drawings that my dad did as a young man, surveying in the west and living the cowboy life in the 1930s. The prints are in rough shape and it is a meticulous job to restore them so they can be seen and enjoyed. I have cards, prints, and tote bags on the Etsy site that have many more images from his zinc plate etchings, also restored. I feel like he was watching over me while I was working. I’ll write more about my own artwork and include photos in the next post.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here is the Etsy link:

https://www.etsy.com/shop/KarenDeversArtStudio?ref=hdr_shop_menu

Posted by: kdeversblog | June 12, 2014

Huglekultur going wild

Beans growing under the grapes

Beans growing under the grapes

 

 

Huglekultur veggies

Huglekultur veggies

Happy plants

Happy plants

I am amazed at how quickly my tiny veggie starts are growing into lush plants. I’ve been picking kale, potatoes, lettuce, and onions out of the back yard raised beds. I have been taking the tops off of the basil in the huglekultur for antipastos.  And the pole beans are starting to grow. They will climb on the grape supports but I’ll keep them trimmed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The blueberries are getting ripe in fat bunches. After moving several times I think I’ve found a spot that they like. They are delicious!

 

 

I added a birdbath as well!

Birdbath with water lillies

Birdbath with water lillies

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted by: kdeversblog | May 25, 2014

Flowers and veggies

Blueberries are forming in the corner bedFlower Grape vines are starting.FlowersFlower beds and pathsWest side of the raised bedWalking path and huglekulturSummer is coming in the Pacific Northwest! Several days of lovely warm weather made planting possible in the huglekultur  and the adjacent flower bed. Carrots, onions, squash, kohlrabi, chard and kale are now on the sunny side of the raised bed.

Blueberries are forming on the bushes in the corner.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The flower bed has salvia, nasturtiums,  snap dragons, and lots of other plants to attract the bees, hummingbirds, and hopefully butterflies. A couple of paths separate the bed into sections. The grapevines are reaching for the sky. Time to train them over the arches.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The flagstone path needs to have fresh mulch put underneath the pavers. I will probably need some help digging them up. They are securely attached to the ground.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted by: kdeversblog | May 19, 2014

Huglekultur and flower beds

Lots of snow, an unusual winter in Portland.

Lots of snow, an unusual winter in Portland.

This past winter, eight inches of snow fell on the city and just when we got shoveled out, more came and covered us with a chilly white blanket once again. Then it all melted and we returned to our more normal northwest winter pattern of rain and wind.

Spring finally arrived with sunny days interspersed with gentle rain. It was time to order a truckload of lovely rich soil, six cubic yards to be exact. This would be enough to cover the foundation of my huglekultur and the adjacent flower bed.

 

Huglekultur is ready for soil.

Huglekultur is ready for soil.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I considered buying bags of soil but realized that would be ridiculous. The good folks at City Farm told me about their soil supplier and I placed my order with Recology Oregon Material Recovery in Portland.

 

West side of the huglekultur

West side of the huglekultur

 

 

Leaves cover all of the remaining grass in the yard

Leaves cover all of the remaining grass in the yard

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Of course it promptly rained for a week. I called the supplier and said we had best wait for a patch of at least three sunny days. After a couple more weeks we had our sunny window and the soil arrived.

Delivering the soil as close as possible

Delivering the soil as close as possible

 

Six cubic yards of lovely soil

Six cubic yards of lovely soil

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then it has to be shoveled

Then it has to be shoveled

 

Of course, all of that lovely soil doesn’t just move itself into position. Lots and lots of shoveling was needed to move it onto the huglekultur and completely cover the foundation. The sunshine held and it took several days to get it in place.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Moving the soil into place

Moving the soil into place

 

Gradually, the huglekultur was covered and then it was time to move the soil over to the adjacent flower bed on the other side of the grape arbor. My neighbor helped me with her wheelbarrow and that helped the job go faster. I raked the soil to make an even cover over the leaves.

 

 

 

 

 

Adding soil in the flower bed

Adding soil in the flower bed

 

Over the winter, the leaves packed down and formed a good cover over the grass. I didn’t put down plastic or paper under the leaves because I wanted to be able to plant in the spring. Seven families brought leaves from their yards to mine so it was a wild collection of different types. From a foot deep, the leaf pack reduced to several inches. The ample rain had helped degrade and compress the leaves.

 

The soil was spread evenly over the flower bed and the huglekultur and the rains were coming again but the sun would return and soon it would be time to plant. I wanted to create a place where butterflies and hummingbirds felt welcome. There would be no chemicals in my garden. Veggies on the huglekultur and flowers in the adjacent beds, with white and red grapes climbing the arbor in between. Ahhhhh, spring.

Time to plant

Time to plant

Posted by: kdeversblog | January 4, 2014

Huglekultur

Logs and branches form the foundation

Logs and branches form the foundation

The raised bed I’m constructing in my front yard is called a huglekultur. The foundation is made up of  logs and branches.

The branches are covered with leaves and straw.

The next layer is straw and leaves

The next layer is straw and leaves

Next I’ll add soil and manure. Since I’m building this  during the winter, I’ll plant  some winter peas for a green manure. It will be ready for planting in the spring.

For more info here is a website that inspired me. Www.richsoil.com/huglekultur/

Posted by: kdeversblog | December 7, 2013

Visiting the Hancocks

Lafayette, CA 2013

Lafayette, CA 2013

I had a delightful visit with Lesley and Tim Hancock last night. Daughter Sierra was there also and kept busy with her iPad. It was cold and rainy outside but we were warm and cozy in their apartment in Lafayette, CA.

Lesley fixed a delicious and healthy paleo meal including a chocolate torte that was too good!  Tim read several of his poetic stories that are future children’s books and we set up a blog for him. I look forward to seeing his first blog post and linking to his site. I hope to be his first subscriber!

Lafayette, CA Dec. 2013

Lafayette, CA Dec. 2013

Lesley is glowing with her second pregnancy, a boy they will name Miles. She is due in a few weeks and she’s looking forward to not being pregnant anymore. I can definitely relate! Both Tim and Lesley are loving parents and cherish little Sierra.

My niece Lesley, husband Tim, and daughter Sierra.

My niece Lesley, husband Tim, and daughter Sierra.

Posted by: kdeversblog | November 17, 2013

Apple Pressing 2013

Fall is the time when apples are ripe and ready to be pressed into juice that tastes like sunshine. Bill, Elli, and I visited Renee and John who do an apple pressing on their back deck each autumn. It was a beautiful sunny day, perfect for learning how to turn apples into juice.

First the apples must be crushed into a slurry before they are pressed. It is best to use a variety of sweet and tart apples to get a more complex and interesting flavor. John had a mechanical grinder for this process and that saves a tremendous amount of work. The apples don't need to be perfect but they shouldn't be wormy or diseased.

1. First the apples must be crushed into a slurry before they are pressed. It is best to use a variety of sweet and tart apples to get a more complex and interesting flavor. John had a mechanical grinder for this process and that saves a tremendous amount of work. The apples don’t need to be perfect but they shouldn’t be wormy or diseased.

John uses a hydraulic press that he controls with a foot bar that gradually pushes the weight upward. The apple juice flows into the tank through tubes. Spigots in the base of the tank are opened for bottling. Then we are ready to taste. Swish the juice around in your mouth so that the saliva helps with digestion and don't drink too much. Otherwise you'll experience some "urgent cleansing" that may not be pleasant.

3. John uses a hydraulic press that he controls with a foot bar that gradually pushes the weight upward. The apple juice flows into the tank through tubes. Spigots in the base of the tank are opened for bottling. Then we are ready to taste. Swish the juice around in your mouth so that the saliva helps with digestion and don’t drink too much. Otherwise you’ll experience some “urgent cleansing” that may not be pleasant.

Renee and John have created a beautiful and highly functional home. Bee hives, raised vegetable beds, grapes, and berry plants. I loved the metal sculptures that were tucked away throughout the landscape. The stone fountain wasn't running but was still lovely and the fire pit arbor was a metal dome that I could imagine covered in blossoms earlier in the year.

Renee and John have created a beautiful and highly functional home. Bee hives, raised vegetable beds, grapes, and berry plants. I loved the metal sculptures that were tucked away throughout the landscape. The stone fountain wasn’t running but was still lovely and the fire pit arbor was a metal dome that I could imagine covered in blossoms earlier in the year.

image

A metal frame is used as a guide for each layer of apples. The cloth is wrapped around the apples to keep them in place but let the juice out. The layers are separated by metal grids and about 10 - 12 layers are built.2. A metal frame is used as a guide for each layer of apples. The cloth is wrapped around the apples to keep them in place but let the juice out. The layers are separated by metal grids and about 10 – 12 layers are built.

Posted by: kdeversblog | November 17, 2013

Foothills Alpacas

imageFoothills AlpacasFoothills Yarn and Fiber

Janet and I made our annual fall trek to Hood River to visit our friends Connie and Thomas Betts. It was a gorgeous day and we had fun petting and feeding the gentle alpacas and holding the two day old baby. Alpacas are curious and seem to be always smiling. Their wool is warmer and softer than sheep wool so I added to my collection of alpaca socks. Foothills yarn and fiber is a wonderful place to visit and their store (online and at the ranch) is a delight. There you can buy yarn of different colors and know the name of the alpaca who gave the wool, you might even be able to feed her some pellets and pet her soft head. Connie and Thomas are living the good life, that’s for sure!

Posted by: kdeversblog | July 10, 2013

Four cups of tea

Four cups of tea

Tea cups top to right – ginger and turmeric; hibiscus and rose; mint and lemon balm; nettle and mullein.

« Newer Posts - Older Posts »

Categories