February 23

Today is cloudy.  No jokes about it.  You can’t see any blue anywhere.  This is a first in a very long time.   The garden continues to grow though and we have had to get the company that mows the lawn to come in to mow the lawn.  This may not sound like much but usually they don’t start their regular maintenance until the end of March or so.  I will say it again: everything is very early this year.  I look forward to the coming months with some nervousness but with excitement to see what will happen.

Hand-painted pot at Albion Manor Bed and Breakfast in Victoria

Hand-painted Pot by Fernando

I have managed to write for the last week or so without mentioning too much about the Olympics which are happening in Vancouver.  There has been a lot of talk about whether or not Victoria will receive any benefit from this huge event.  From the beginning I felt that we wouldn’t.  Others thought it would be a great boom to the city.  My reasoning was that people would be coming to Vancouver to see the Olympics.  They are not necessarily on holidays- they are just coming to see the Olympics.  It is unlikely that they will plan to spend more time here than is necessary especially considering that this is the winter.  In the end, I have been proved correct.  There are very few bookings at any of the bed and breakfasts in Victoria.  We had one couple from Paris who booked for 4 days in Victoria then 4 days in Vancouver and then another 4 in Victoria.  They had as wonderful time in Victoria, as all visitors do, but when they got here, they cancelled the last 4 days in Victoria saying that they didn’t realize that Victoria was so far from Vancouver!  What a surprise.  So all in all, we have 2 bookings during the Olympics, but only 1 that is Olympics related.

The question on my mind right now is whether or not to aerate the lawn again this year.  It was done last year and I can’t say that there was any great improvement in the quality of the lawn.  As in all such questions, one turns to google to get information.  While no one gives information on whether or not it is necessary to aerate several years in a row, all searches give information on the characteristics of a lawn that requires aeration- an ours fits those quite well: the lawn doesn’t stand up well in periods of low precipitation (i.e., summer drought) indicating that the soil is so compacted with age that water doesn’t penetrate well to the roots and as a result, the  roots don’t go very deep.   This also means that nutrients aren’t getting to the roots making the grass weak and allowing weeds to grow- all problems that we have here.  So the question is answered- yes we will aerate again this year.

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