Sunday, June 3, 2012

Wasting Away

     I've been working on loosing some of my excess weight the past few months.  Package bee season helped me get started as I'm often so busy that I end up missing lunch.  I've had the additional incentive of Trek coming up in another month.  For anyone who isn't LDS that reads this blog, Trek is a "pioneer" experience where we take our older youth on a week long 20 mile trek pushing hand carts like some of the earlyMormon pioneers. I was involved in a Trek experience with our stake about six years ago.  My daughter, Sarah, enlisted me to go with their Stake when they do their Trek activity in early July. This will take place in eastern Washington where it is a very safe assumption that it will be hot and sandy.  I figured I would do much better hiking in the heat if I lost about 20 pounds.  Yet another incentive is the fact that losing weight makes a huge difference with my sleep apnea.  In the past two months I have lost 14 pounds.  I am down to 186 having peaked at 200.  I would like to get down to 175.  I think if I can get down to 180 before Trek, the 20 mile hike through the desert may help me lose the last five pounds.

   I was looking at my blueberries yesterday morning and it appears they are setting fruit very well. I'm expecting a bumper crop of blueberries. We have 14 blueberry bushes at present as we lost one bush this past winter. I imagine some of you are surprised I didn't invite you to a funeral. I do love my fruit trees and bushes but I try to keep things rational.  All three varieties of plums on my plum tree also appear to have set fruit well and it is looking very good so far for the sweet cherries. All six sweet cherry trees have set at least some fruit. The forecast is less rosy for the apples and my two little pie cherry trees as we had more rain when they were blooming. The strawberries, on the other hand, are loaded with developing fruit.  We picked our first strawberry just a few days ago.  For the benefit of those who live nearby I'm sure I will be anxious for someone to give me a break on the strawberry picking within a few weeks.
A few of 50 or so Chojuru pears on my Korean pear tree

    I have a little asian pear tree.  Excuse me, I should say I have a little Korean pear tree.  Chris, my Korean son-in-law, always corrects me on that point.  I have grafted four different varieties onto the one tree.  Last year was the first year it fruited, with just the first or lower variety bearing fruit.  I think I harvested a total of 12 pears.  This year it is producing a much larger crop, most of it still from the lower branches. However, it has set at least one pear for each of the other three varieties so I'll get a little taste of its ultimate potential.  The four varieties on the tree are Chojuru, Mishirasu, Shinseiki, and Hamese.  There is one very odd thing with my Korean pear. It seems that all of the different varieties have Japanese names.  I'm thinking that the Koreans may need to lodge a strong protest with the Japanese over that.


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